Yuna Kim
South Korea's Yuna Kim is favored to win a second straight gold in the ladies' free skate. Reuters

The ladies' figure skating short program enters its final stages Wednesday, as favorites Yuna Kim and Yulia Lipnitskaya take on a deep field at the Iceberg Skating Palace in Sochi, Russia.

Hailing from South Korea, Kim is the defending 2010 Vancouver Winter Games champion and seeks to increase her country’s medal count to three gold in these games.

Russia’s 15-year-old Lipnitskaya came out of seemingly nowhere to lead her country to victory in the team skating event and was already awarded the host nation’s highest sporting award, the Honored Master of Sports, from President Vladimir Putin.

Both Kim and Lipnitskaya are trying to accomplish lofty goals. Kim could be the first back-to-back ladies Olympic champion since Katarina Witt completed the feat in Calgary in 1988, and Lipnitskaya could hand Russia its first gold medal in the the event.

While most expect the race to come down to Kim and Lipnitskaya, there are still plenty of contenders.

Japan’s Masao Asada took the silver medal back in 2010 and is the reigning Four Continents and Grand Prix champion.

And Team USA’s Ashley Wagner and Gracie Gold represent their country’s best hope after a bronze victory in the team skate.

Currently, the U.S. is second with 20 total medals, just one back from leader Russia.

TV Channel: NBC Sports Network

Time: Wednesday, 10 a.m. EST

Live Online Stream Info: A live online stream is available at NBC Live Extra here.