Canada's Kim Boutin will be hoping to maintain her superb form at the ISU Short Track Speed Skating World Cup in Nagoya ©ISU

International Skating Union (ISU) Short Track Speed Skating World Cup action is set to resume tomorrow in Nagoya, going a long way towards clarifying who this season's dominant skaters will be.

The three-day event at the Japanese city's Nippon Gaishi Arena will be followed by next weekend's leg in Shanghai in China.

Canada's Kim Boutin came flying out of the traps during the first two weekends of racing in North America.

The 24-year-old won 500 metres and 1,500m gold medals in Salt Lake City, with the former coming in a world record time of 41.936sec.

She then sparkled on home ice in Montreal, where she topped the podium in both the 500m and 1,000m.

Boutin admits her strong results so far bring extra pressure.

"It's hard and stressful but I just need to focus on being calm," she said.

Overall world champion Suzanne Schulting of The Netherlands, meanwhile, will be hoping to reassert the dominance she established last term.

Still ranked number one in the world, the Dutchwoman will take confidence from her 1,000m win in Salt Lake City, despite having had some ill fortune in Montreal.

Also quiet so far this term has been South Korea's Choi Min Jeong, the three-time overall world champion who will be looking to step up her game in Nagoya.

Hungary's Shaolin Sándor Liu will be looking to capitalise on the absence of South Korea's Hwang Dae Heon ©ISU
Hungary's Shaolin Sándor Liu will be looking to capitalise on the absence of South Korea's Hwang Dae Heon ©ISU

Elsewhere on the women's side, Italy's Martina Valcepina has impressively continued her excellence over 500m, winning a gold medal in Salt Lake City and finishing second behind Boutin in Montreal.

The 27-year-old has been on the ISU circuit for more than a decade - and this winter will mark 10 years since she became the youngest Italian to compete at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games - but she has never looked stronger.

Also likely to be in contention are South Koreans Kim Ji Yoo and Seo Whi Min, China's Han Yutong, Hungary's Petra Jászapáti, The Netherlands' Yara van Kerkhof and Poland's Natalia Maliszewska.

In men's racing, South Korea's Hwang Dae Heon started the season powerfully, but the current world number one is missing from the line-up in Nagoya.

Among those striving to capitalise on his absence is Hungary's Shaoang Liu and his older brother Shaolin Sándor, who was victorious over 500m in Montreal. 

Significantly improved Russian Semen Elistratov, the winner of the 1,500m in Salt Lake City and the 1,000m in Montreal, is also worth looking out for.

China's Wu Dajing looks back to his best in the 500m, while the South Korean quartet of Park Ji Won, Lee June Seo, Kim Dong Wook and Park In Wook have made podiums already this year, once again illustrating the country's incredible squad depth in the sport.

The home fans' best chances for glory this weekend also lie in the men's field. 

Japan's Kazuki Yoshinaga has had a quiet start to the 2019-2020 campaign, but he demonstrated in Calgary last season that he is capable of winning gold medals on a good day by taking the 1,500m event.

The 20-year-old, whose mother was also a successful short track athlete, is from Nagoya.