By Patrick Johnston
Singapore’s mixed relay triathlon team spoke of their pride in making their Asian Games debut in Hangzhou on Monday (Oct 2), vowing to come back stronger and wiser for the experience.
The team of Herlene Yu, Luke Chua and 2023 SEA Games individual bronze medallists Bryce Chong and Louisa Middleditch faced some tough opposition in China, recording a time of 1 hr 35 mins 38 seconds for a commendable ninth place out of the 12 teams.
“It was a privilege to be among the first triathletes from Singapore to compete in the Asian Games, and I’d like to thank everyone who helped us get this opportunity,” Middleditch said.
“I raced with my heart and gave it my all today, but of course we always strive for better. I know what I need to work on and I am even more motivated to keep pushing and chasing my Olympic dreams.”
Singapore’s Louisa Middleditch peels off her cap after completing the swimming part of her leg of the mixed relay Asian Games triathlon at the Chun’an Jieshou Sports Centre. (Photo: SNOC/Kelly Wong)
The Asian Games super-sprint format saw each team member complete a 300m swim, 6.67km bike ride and 1.86km run before tagging in their team mate.
Chong led off the Singapore effort, and recorded the team’s fastest times in the swim and bike ride.
“We as a team, being the first few triathletes to compete in the Asian Games, it is truly a privilege and an eye opener,” he said.
“It was definitely a step up from SEA Games and this definitely drives us more and we are definitely hungry for more.”
Singapore’s Bryce Chong smiles as he runs his leg of the mixed relay Asian Games triathlon at the Chun’an Jieshou Sports Centre. (Photo: SNOC/Kelly Wong)
Yu tagged in next and although she described competing as an unforgettable experience, she was disappointed the team could not finish higher in the field, with the Philippines only one minute ahead in seventh.
“Though the results were not favourable, there were lots of positives to take away and I’m proud of the team for giving our best and leaving it out on the field,” she said.
Chua, who turns 22 later this month, said the youthful team would return to the Asiad better for the experience in Hangzhou.
“Lots of people to thank for just getting me on the start line,” he said. “Proud of the team and what we have achieved today. I look forward to a couple more Asian Games with the team.”
Singapore’s Herlene Yu grabs her bike for the next leg of the mixed relay Asian Games triathlon at the Chun’an Jieshou Sports Centre. (Photo: SNOC/Kelly Wong)
The 19th Asian Games are held in Hangzhou, China from 23 September to 8 October 2023. For the latest Team Singapore coverage and news, follow Team Singapore on their social media channels (Facebook, Instagram, TikTok) or visit the official Team Singapore website.