Contributed by Ho Shu Fen

Airiel Ruth Ho

Byte CII Asian Champion Airiel Ruth Ho won gold to qualify for the YOG. (Photo 1 courtesy of SingaporeSailing)

Pattaya, Thailand, Monday, November 30, 2009 – Darren Choy, 15, won a silver at the Byte CII Asian Championship to finish as the top Singaporean boy. Fellow Singaporean Nathan Tang won the bronze.

Over the past week, the Royal Varuna Yacht Club in Thailand has played hosts to the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) Asian qualifier for the One Person Dinghy Boys and Girls events in conjunction with the 2009 Byte CII Asian Championship. At this event, three qualifying places were up for grabs in both the boys and girls categories.

In the girls’ event, Singapore’s Airiel Ruth Ho won gold and was joined on the podium by fellow Singaporeans Natasha Michikho Yokoyama (silver) and 2009 Byte CII World female champion and Asian Youth Games silver medallist Najwa Jumali.

Fifty sailors from Thailand, Japan, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, India, China, Malaysia and Indonesia were in Pattaya for the first continental qualifier for the inaugural 2010 YOG.

In the Open Byte CII Asian Championship event, top honours went to 17-year-old Keerati Bualong of Thailand who was also the 2007 Byte CII World Champion and 2009 Laser Radial Youth World Champion, with Darren Choy and Nathan Tang claiming the silver and bronze.

Mark Robinson, SingaporeSailing's Head of High Performance, said: "The results of the YOG Asian Qualifier show that there is a lot of depth in our Youth Olympic Games programme; Singapore taking the top five places in the boys category and top four places in the girls category.

“Some of our sailors will now be heading to Europe to test themselves against the age-group competition from that continent in preparation for the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games."

Meanwhile, over at Jomtien Beach at the Pattaya Cup, the Singapore windsurfers performed well to secure podium positions in the YOG windsurfing class, the Techno 293.

In the girls' division, Asian Youth Games Bronze Medalist Audrey Yong and Amanda Ng finished in second and third positions.

In the Techno 293 boys' division, Jeddy Tan missed the bronze medal by a mere five points settling for fourth place, and teammate Chuah Jun Ler followed behind in fifth position.

Event website

Overall Results

Darren Choy, 2nd
Nathan Tang, 3rd
Terence Choo, 4th
Chai Xun, 6th
Mark Wong, 7th
Tan Yong Jie, 11th
Muhd Audi Afiq bin Aznan, 13th
Joel Yin, 14th
Ho Ruth Airiel, 15th (1st, Girls' division)
Natasha Michiko Yokoyama, 18th (3rd, Girls' division)
Najwa Jumali, 20th
Ernest Tan, 22nd
Lin Josua, 23rd
Koh Ling Ying, 25th
Jerrold Ng, 27th
Ng Sue Shen, 30th
Samantha Lim, 41st
Jazlene Ong, 49th

Darren Choy

Darren Choy is an Asian Youth Games Champion, Byte CII World Champion and Byte CII Asian Runner-up. He finished second in the qualifier. (Photo 2 courtesy of SingaporeSailing)