By REDintern Alethia Tiang. Pictures by Vanessa Lim, Marvin Lowe and Les Tan.
Clara Wong (left) and Mok Ying Rong head into the last stretch of the race. (Photo 1 © Vanessa Lim/Red Sports)
Bedok Reservoir Park, Wednesday, March 25, 2009 – Clara Wong from the Methodist Girls’ School emerged as the champion in the B Division girls’ category in a time of 16 minutes 8 seconds at this year’s 50th National Inter-School Cross-Country Championships.
It was an unexpected victory for her as many, including herself, were expecting Raffles Girls’ School runner, Mok Yin Rong, to take the gold like she did at the Wings Cross-Country last month. This time, Wong stole the championship trophy from Mok and completed the race 8 seconds ahead of Mok. Clara also lead her MGS team to second place with 51 points, 6 points more than Cedar Girls’ Secondary.
“I cannot believe it. I’m so overwhelmed. It wasn’t expected,” said an out-of-breath Clara.
She drew her motivation today from the movie “Facing the Giants” that she watched the day before the race. She remembered that in the show, it was said that one should do their best and not quit, as if you do, you’re quitting your team. Before the race, Wong kept that quote in her mind, reminding herself that she just has to do her best and not worry.
“At the end, I thought, don’t lose it. Don’t give up. Don’t slow down,” said Wong, recalling her thoughts during the last stretch of the race.
Wong also drew her motivation from her parents’ never-ending support. Her father, Mr Benjamin Wong, said that he was very surprised with his daughter’s victory as there were a handful of good runners.
“Mok also did quite well. It’s the condition on the very day itself that matters,” commented Mr Wong.
Mok expressed her disappointment with her race but was determined to try harder again next year as she takes this race as a learning experience.
Recalling her race, Mok said “I think I went out too slow. I wasted energy there. I could have caught them if I ran comfortably fast.”
In the C Division girls’ race, Chan Xue Rou from Cedar Girls’ Secondary School clinched the gold with a time of 17 minutes 2 seconds, defeating Janielle Lim from CHIJ St Nicholas Girls’ School and Rachel Yeung from Methodist Girls’ School. Chan, like Wong, did not expect to win the gold in the competition. However, her Cedar team-mates begged to differ, excitedly exclaiming that they expected her to win.
In the A Division girls category, Chew Hanyu from Raffles’ Junior College secured the gold medal with a time of 16 minutes 17 seconds, 23 seconds to finish in front of Ramandeep Kaur from National Junior College. Chew had achieved second at last year’s competition and wanted very much to win the championship title this year. “My victory was expected by my teachers, coach and friends and I went out strong with thoughts of getting the gold,” said Chew.
“I felt that today’s cross-country race was really a great one for me and my team-mates! We really put our best foot forward and ran our hearts out gladly to clinch the title. We placed our trust in each other and in our training and kept the faith throughout the race. I am really proud of the Raffles Cross-country team for achieving this great feat!” said Chew. Her team came in first with 30 points, defeating Hwa Chong Institution by 6 points.
For full results, please visit http://www.schoolsports.sg/sssc/cross_country/results.
Girls’ Individual Results (Top 10)
1. Chan Xue Rou – 17:02.67
2. Janielle Lim Yan Han – 17:13.92
3. Rachel Yeung Zhi Xin – 17:38.87
4. Nicole Lum – 17:48.92
5. Roshini Piragasam – 17:51.31
6. Teo Kay Lynn – 17:54.36
7. Dayna Tan Li Ting – 18:01.83
8. Jean Iau Nan Yan – 18:09.43
9. Tabita Ong – 18:09.65
10. Tan Wan Qin – 18:09.68
1. Clara Wong Wanqi – 16:08.57
2. Mok Yin Rong – 16:16.79
3. Wan Zahrah Binte A A Lim – 16:40.81
4. Teh May Yong – 16:48.27
5. Ranjitha D/O Raja – 16:56.34
6. Li Ying Si Winsy – 17:05.61
7. Soh Rui Min – 17:34.40
8. Lian Xue Li, Berenice – 17:36.47
9. Janelle Tan She En – 17:38.18
10. Joanne Chew Chi Ching – 17:44.40
1. Chew Han Yu – 16:17.79
2. Ramandeep Kaur – 16:40.40
3. Raina Lee Rui Na – 16:49.63
4. Melissa Tay Si Min – 16:55.56
5. Louisa Chiew Yi Jun – 16:56.57
6. Emelyne Teo Jia Wei – 16:57.16
7. Annabelle Yee – 16:69.78
8. Look Xinqi – 17:17.90
9. Audrey Lee Tian Ni – 17:30.03
10. Guo Shu Ting Serena – 17:47.91
A runner going down with leg cramps very near the bridge. (Photo 2 © Vanessa Lim/Red Sports)
Despite having leg cramps, she was determined to finish the race with some help from a teacher of another school, but she was stopped by an official for safety reasons. (Photo 3 © Vanessa Lim/Red Sports)
An A Division runner catches up with a B Division runner. (Photo 8 © Vanessa Lim/Red Sports)
The C Division girls start their race at the sound of the horn. (Photo 4 © Vanessa Lim/Red Sports)
The B Division girls with front runners Clara Wong and Mok Ying Rong. (Photo 5 © Vanessa Lim/Red Sports)
The A Division girls get off to a flying start. (Photo 6 © Vanessa Lim/Red Sports)
Coming in first for the C Division girls category is Cheryl Chan from Cedar… (Photo 7 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
… with Janelle Lim from CHIJ St Nicholas Girls’ second… (Photo 8 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
… while Rachel Yeung from Methodist Girls’ School is third. (Photo 9 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
Clara Wong from Methodist Girls’ School is the B Division girls Champion… (Photo 10 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
… and she is followed closely by Mok Ying Rong from Raffles Girls’ School. (Photo 11 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
Wan Zahrah from Cedar Girls’ finished third. (Photo 12 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
The A Division winning team from Raffles Institution. (Photo 13 © Marvin Lowe/Red Sports)
More pictures in the gallery.