Gdynia, Poland, 17 July 2018 – Singapore sailors Daniel Hung, 17 and Simone Chen, 15, took home the Gold medal in the Boys’ Division and Girls’ Under-16 Division respectively at the Laser 4.7 Youth World Championships in Gdynia, Poland.
Over the past six days, 430 of the top youth sailors from around the world competed in a range of sailing conditions. Wind conditions on the first day were slow at 4-7 knots but picked up in the subsequent days to 8-15 knots, allowing for some good racing.
Singapore sailors maintained a strong performance throughout the regatta, with two girls and two boys finishing in the top five after the first day of racing.
17-year-old Jodie Lai and 16-year old Lee Wonn Kye topped the fleet on the first day, with both Simone Chen and Daniel Hung sitting in 4th place in their respective fleets. Over the next three days,
Wonn Kye maintained his lead, while Daniel and Simone’s consistency kept them in the top five.
However, things weren’t all smooth sailing for our sailors. A disqualification on Day 4, coupled with a bad start on Day 5, meant that Lee Wonn Kye dropped to 7th place and could not recover his lead. Simone was also penalised by the jury for a Rule 42 violation on Day 5 ending the day in third place.
In the end, it was consistency in their performance that resulted in Daniel and Simone’s victory.
Daniel Hung maintained top five positions throughout the five days, and finished top in the boys division on the sixth day. “Conditions and wind were pretty tricky. Alertness, consistency and hard work helped me to achieve my results” said Daniel. Daniel will be representing Singapore at the upcoming Asian Games – his first time at the Asiad.
“To be the Laser 4.7 world champions in both the boys and girls fleet is a tremendous achievement for Daniel Hung and Simone Chen and Singapore. With the right support and individual talent, our sailors have demonstrated that they have what it takes to perform at the world stage.” said Dr Lincoln Chee, President of the SingaporeSailing.
Liu Hong, a 15-year coaching veteran at the Singapore Sailing Federation, handed in an A grade report card for this event after coaching the junior single-handed squad for just under a year. “From the pre-event right through to the final race, the team’s support for one another was the key to their success. Daniel’s demonstrated impressive mental resilience, which allowed him to finish strongly even though the conditions were not in his favour. Wonn Kye and Simone are moving up to the Laser Radial after this and have great potential to do well in the future.” said Liu Hong.
“I would like to credit their respective families, schools (Nanyang Girls’ High School, Victoria Junior College, Raffles Girls School, Raffles Institution, Anglo Chinese Junior College) and our Singapore Sailing Federation coach Liu Hong and staff for their contributions and hard work. We are so happy for them!“ said Dr Chee.
The 18th Asian Games will be held in Jakarta and Palembang on 18 August to 2 September 2018.
Historically, sailing has been Singapore’s best performing sport at the Asian Games, winning over 50% of Team Singapore’s Gold medals since 1994.
“We are proud of our Laser 4.7 squad with three boys and three girls in the top 20 at this world championship. We hope that good winds continue to favour our sailors in the upcoming Asian Games” said Han Ee Lim, CEO of SingaporeSailing.
Final Results (Boys)
1 – Daniel Hung
4 – Lee Wonn Kye
12 – Jonathan Lio (3rd U-16)
74 – James Koh
Final Results (Girls)
2 – Simone Chen (1st U-16)
16 – Jodie Lai
34 – Riane Lee (12th U-16)