A bad back injury which lasted eight months forced Sin Ming Wei out of his pet event, the sprint hurdles, three years ago. But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise. "That was when I realised I'm not cut out for hurdling because my injury stemmed from hurdling," said the Hwa Chong Institution Year 6 student. "Afterwards, I decided to try out 400 (metres), because back then I wasn't that of a strong starter, so I wasn't really that suited for the short burst events." "I think I had potential (in the 400m) and basically my coach and my teammates continued supporting me, and that's where I am today." And where he is today, is atop the A Division boys' 400m podium. In a tight race, he stopped the clock first in a personal best 51.45 seconds, finishing just 0.13s ahead of runner-up Samel Sahil Chetan (51.58s) of Singapore Sports School.
RI's Caleb Loy overtakes ACSI's Rayan Bagheri Aghdam in the final 50 metres to clinch the gold medal in the C Division Boys 400m Final.
Bouncing back from his defeat in the B Division boys' 1500-metre final, Chai Jiacheng took it in his stride to clinch the gold medal in the B Division boys' 3000m.
Hwa Chong Institution's Mei Togawa went beyond even her own expectations as she vaulted to a new A Division girl's mark of 3.19 metres en route to gold in the girls' Open pole vault event, while Lin Ziqi of CHIJ St. Nicholas Girls' School placed 11th with a 2.30m jump to crack the C Division girls' record.
Defending champion Lim En Ning of Dunman High School (DHS) defied injuries to deliver a stunning leap of 5.66 metres, edging out her fellow competitors to win the A division girls' long jump event.
A Div Shot Put: RI’s Matthew Lee spoils Hwa Chong party with gold-winning throw despite finger injury
On the same day that athletes from Hwa Chong Institution (HCI) emerged victorious in the B Division boys' long jump and A Division girls' high jump, Matthew Lee of Raffles Institution (RI) prevented a top three HCI podium sweep in the A Division boys' shot put when he won gold with the furthest throw of 16.66 metres. He finished ahead of HCI duo Kynaston Wee (16.08m) and Murali Sham Kumar (14.93m), while RI's Tim Ong posted 13.66m to sneak into the top four ahead of HCI's Mook He Jun (13.22m).
"One of my biggest disappointments last year was not qualifying for the final. This year is, let's just say, a shot at redemption." These fighting words from Lim Yu Zhe of Nan Hua High School (NHHS) held true as he adamantly held his lead throughout the race, simultaneously claiming the throne at his final B Division boys’ 1500 metres event at the 60th National Schools Track and Field Championships.
Just three years ago, Hwa Chong Institution's Zeen Chia was competing in racewalking because his coaches told him his frame was too small to be a jumper. Fast forward three years, Zeen has the last laugh, clinching the B Division boys' long jump gold at the 60th National Schools Track and Field Championships in a huge personal best of 6.69 metres. His winning leap was at least 30 centimetres further than the best jumps recorded by his nearest competitors, HCI teammate Isaac Ong (6.39m) and Raffles Institution's high jump champ Mingwen Lee Sullivan (6.21m).