Our Team Singapore athletes getting ready for the SG50 canoeing relay (Photo by Sport Singapore)
Despite living on the same island, our Team Singapore athletes rarely get the chance to meet each other. So when the opportunity arose, they did not pass up on the chance to catch up and bond.
Athletes from 15 out of the 36 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games sports came together on 18 January at the Singapore Canoe Marathon 2015 for the Team Singapore SG50 canoeing relay. Together with Minister Tan Chuan-Jin, Minister for Manpower and President of the Singapore National Olympic Committee, and Mr Nicholas Fang, Chef de Mission for the 2015 SEA Games, our athletes paddled a collective distance of 50km to commemorate SG50.
Even though some of our athletes were out of their comfort zone, they could be seen laughing and chitchatting with their fellow Team Singapore counterparts, grateful for the chance to catch up during the marathon, which was held at the Singapore Sports Hub Water Sports Centre.
Our Team Singapore swimmer Quah Ting Wen (L) and gymnast Lim Heem Wei (R) at the Singapore Canoe Marathon 2015 (Photo by Sport Singapore)
Olympic swimmer Quah Ting Wen is one such athlete who enjoys meeting up with her fellow athletes.
“It was a good experience and I had fun. It was nice meeting different athletes and learning about their sports,” shared Ting Wen.
“Even though Singapore is very small, I don't actually get to see my fellow athletes a lot, other than in training or at the gym. So there's not much time to hang out and talk. This event is one of the rare opportunities,” shared the 23-year-old.
“We also get to meet up during SEA Games, Asian Games and Commonwealth Games when we are in the athletes' village, but it's difficult to hang out because of our different competition schedules.
Our Team Singapore sprinter Dipna Lim-Prasad (L) with canoeist Soh Sze Ying (R) at the Singapore Canoe Marathon 2015 (Photo by Sport Singapore)
Sprinter Dipna Lim-Prasad too echoed the same sentiments even though she candidly shared that the paddling was a painful and sore experience, as she primarily relies on her legs during races and not her arms.
“But I love coming to these events and meeting my fellow Team Singapore athletes. I had the chance to meet some of them during the Vivocity Fashion Show last year and I really enjoyed myself.
“Furthermore, it is really interesting to see our fellow canoeists in their own element, so it's really fun.”
Singapore Canoe Federation operations manager Joseph Ang was pleased with the turnout of more than 650 participants for the marathon and was also glad to see our Team Singapore athletes having a fun day out.
“Since this year is SG50 and Singapore will be hosting the SEA Games, we decided to invite all the other sports to be part of this event because they are all part of Team Singapore. So this was like a big gathering to catch up,” Ang said.
Special thanks to the following athletes who took part in the relay:
Aquatics – Swimming: Quah Ting Wen
Aquatics – Water polo: Gina Koh
Archery: Alan Lee
Athletics: Dipna Lim-Prasad
Fencing: Lim Wei Wen
Floorball: Muhammad Syazni Bin Ramlee
Judo: Walter Soh
Sailing: Scott Glen Sydney
Softball: Wong Teck Piaw
Squash: Benjamin Sim
Traditional Boat Race: Heng Tong Sheng & Pamela Chong
Wushu: Lee Tze Yuan & Emily Sim