THE rain may have lessened the spectator turnout for the third round of the 2010 Malaysian Waterski and Wakeboard Champion-ships but it failed to dampen the participants’ spirits.
The skies opened up on the final day on Sunday at the Water Sports Complex in Precinct 6, Putrajaya from noon onwards thus affecting the spectator turnout as opposed to the previous year.
However, Malaysian Waterski and Wakeboard Federation (MWWF) head coach Phillipa Yoong, who spoke on behalf of the organisers, said the rain did not effect the performances of competitors.
“The event on Sundays normally attract a huge crowd. But this time around the bad weather probably explains why there was a small crowd on the last day of the competition which was simultanesously held with the Floria 2010,” she said.
Back to the competition, Phillipa was involved in a stiff race with her brother — former Formula 1 driver Alex Yoong, who is back in the waterski competition after a 13-year hiatus.
Against the excitement provided by the siblings, it was Mark Simmons from England who fended off Phillipa and Alex to win the Slalom Men and Women’s Open.
On his preparation for the competition, Alex said that he had only been waterskiing about half a dozen times prior to the competition.
“It was more of catching up with friends from different countries. I went out and had a bit of fun, I had no expectations. I plan to start skiing more consistently if work and time permits,” he said.
He credits his sister for encouraging him.
“She’s great in getting my mind back and I’m pleased with her performance during the championship,” he said.
He said it was nice to be out on the lake and see so many youngsters learning how to ski, in reference to six-year-old Aaliyah Yoong Hanifah, the youngest competitor in round three, who rewrote the Malaysian Girls’ Shortboard record with 960 points.
It was woman power for Singaporean Sasha Christian who beat compatriots Frankie Ng (second place) and Joshua Tay (third place) to emerge champion in the Wakeboard Men and Women’s Open category. She was the only female contender in the categeory.
This is the third time that Christian took part in the championship in Putrajaya and she said it was her best result thus far.
She said the key to her win was a good warm-up before the competition.
“I was surprised with the results as I was intimidated by the other contestants.
“I hope to be top three in Asia,” she said of her future goals.
The 17-year-old, who studies at a sports school, practises twice a week and has participated in international championships such as the Asian Championship in South Korea and the World Games in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
Ng, a 35-year-old wakeboard instructor, was a little disappointed with the bad weather but said that it did not affect his performance.
This is the first time that Kuwait participated in the championship. The seven-man strong contingent came second in the Wakeboard Women Intermediate and emerged champions for the wakeboard men’s novice.
Although this was the first competition he joined, Falah Adel Al-Falah won the wakeboard men novice. “I’ve only started wakeboarding for a season (one year). I’m very happy with the results, this would be a motivation for me,” he said adding that he was impressed that the championship was well-organised.
The championship had a total of 82 entries - Singapore (17), Kuwait (7), Indonesia (6), Great Britain (4), France (5), Japan (1), Canada (2) and Malaysia (40).
Slalom Men & Women’s Intermediate: 1. Kalya Kee (Sin); 2. Eric Voisin (Fra); 3. Sebastien Delnatte (Fra).
Wakeboard Women’s Novice: 1. Nadya Atalia Sinaga (Ina); 2. Jasmine Hollingworth (Eng); 3. Hanis Azemi(Mas).
Wakeboard Men’s Novice: 1. Falah Adel Al-Falah (Kuw); 2. Joshua Chia (Sin);3. Yerikho Tobias Sinaga (Ina)
Wakeboard Women’s Intermediate: 1. Styfany Foo (Sin); 2. Jeanne M Al Failakawi (Kuw); 3. Kalya Kee (Sin)
Wakeboard Men’s Intermediate: 1. Jeremy Chng Chee Kiang (Sin); 2. David Tan Chee Yong (Sin); 3. Guy Tanaka (Jpn)
Slalom Girls (Under 15): 1. Nadiah Nasir (Mas); Hanis Azemi (Mas); 3. Syakirah Nasir (Mas).
Slalom Boys (Under 15): 1. Shamal Norman (Mas); 2. Syahir Nasir (Mas); 3. Muhd Ariff Alaudin(Mas)
Slalom Boys & Girls (Under 10): 1. Hadi Irfan Rahaizah (Mas); 2. Anakin Ali(Mas); 3. Alisandra Ali (Mas)
Slalom Men & Women’s Open: 1. Mark Simmons (Eng); 2. Phillipa Yoong (Mas); 3. Alex Yoong (Mas)
Wakeboard Men & Women’s Open : 1. Sasha Christian (Sin); 2. Frankie Ng (Sin); 3. Joshua Tay (Sin)