Smooth sailing for Singapore at Nanjing YOG as sailors surge to Top 10
It was moving day for Singapore's sailors at the Youth Olympic Games yesterday at the Jinniu Lake in Nanjing, China.
Bernie Chin, Samantha Yom and Ynez Lim all surged into the top 10 in their respective classes on Day 3 of the competition, with fewer than half of the 11 races to go in the last three days of racing.
Bernie, in particular, is in a great position to bag Singapore's first Youth Olympic gold.
The 15-year-old topped the field of 30 sailors after he finished first, fifth and third in races five, six, and seven yesterday in the Byte CII - Men's One Person Dinghy event.
If he creates history by becoming the first Singaporean to win gold at the Games, it will be a comeback story for the ages.
The Raffles Institution student got off to a bad start on Monday when he placed 21st in his first race, and did not even finish his second race, adding a whopping 31 points to his tally to place 27th overall.
The sailor with the fewest overall points after 11 races wins the event.
But, on Tuesday, Bernie bounced back superbly to finish first and second in races three and four, respectively, to climb to 14th overall before yesterday's chart-topping heroics.
In the other classes, Samantha is also well-placed to win a medal in the Byte CII - Women's One Person Dinghy event as she is currently second in a field of 30 sailors after seven races.
In races five, six and seven yesterday, the 15-year-old Raffles Girls' School student came in second, second and 11th, respectively.
Ynez had a fine outing too, finishing sixth, seventh and sixth in races four, five and six in the Techno 293 - Women's Windsurfer event.
The 16-year-old St Anthony's Canossian Secondary School student is now eighth out of 21 sailors.
Singapore's chef-de-mission Mark Chay said: "I'm proud of all our sailors. All of them have performed well thus far.
"Bernie showed depth of character, digging deep and doing what needs to be done over the past few races. He's a resilient chap, and has shown tenacity to overcome setbacks to put himself in this position.
"Sam is doing extremely well too, showing us what consistency of peak performance is. Ynez is also doing well, with a top-10 placing now in a high-calibre field.
"We're only halfway through the regattas, but we are where we want to be. Anything can happen and the sailors need to say focused and execute the plans, which they have crafted with their coach.
"I am confident they will be able to continue putting up good scores."
Meanwhile, in gymnastics, 15-year-old Nadine Joy Nathan finished 18th in the women's all-around finals with a score of 46.300.
This was below the 49.325 she posted in qualification, and coach Zhu Yibin said: "It wasn't the best of scores and she was nervous in the final, making a few errors.
"She still needs to improve on her execution and her feel for the apparatus, and aim for scores higher than 50.
"That said, she is still young, and this exposure and experience will definitely benefit her ahead of the SEA (South-east Asia) Games next year."
- Boys' 50m butterfly heats: Dylan Koo - 26.22sec (34th, DNQ)
- Girls' 200m freestyle heats: Nur Marina Chan - 2min 06.63sec (27th, DnQ)
- Mixed international team 10m air pistol: Teh Xiu Yi and Mohamed Ahmed (Egy) beat Christopher Summerell (Aus) and Christina van Elzeligen (Den) 10-5 (advanced to quarter-finals)
- Girls' 100m hurdles: Nur Izlyn Zaini - 14.58s (17th, advanced to B/C finals)
- Mixed doubles group stage: Yin Jing Yuan and Yee Herng Hwee lost to Diaconu Adina (Rou) and Diogo Chen (Por) 3-0