2019 SEA Games: Success for Indonesia and Philippines in Triathle and Laser Run
Indonesia and host nation the Philippines shared the spoils as Triathle and Laser Run combined to enrich the 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Manilla (PHI).
It was the first time the two UIPM Sports had been included on the programme, and the host nation won two gold medals and Indonesia won the other four, with athletes from Thailand and Singapore also making the podium. Malaysia was the fifth nation to take part.
The arrival of Typhoon Kammuri created challenges for organisers, with the first scheduled competition day postponed due to extreme weather. Finally racing took place in very hot conditions on December 5 (Laser Run), December 6 (Individual Triathle) and December 7 (Mixed Relay Triathle).
The venue was Subic Bay, 150km north-west of the capital city, and the UIPM Sports took place on a beautiful sandy beach. The rules allowed only one athlete from each participating nation to win a medal, and the race for gold was fierce.
Dea Salsabia Putri (INA) claimed the women’s individual Laser Run title, with Natpapat Sangngio (THA) picking up silver and Kaixin Shermaine Tung (SGP) bronze.
Indonesia also took gold in the men’s event thanks to Muhammad Taufik (INA). Samuel German (PHI) was forced to settle for silver while Ming Wei Marcus Ong (SGP) picked up bronze.
In the Mixed Relay, the host nation had its cherished moment of glory as Princess Arbilon and Samuel German (PHI) teamed up to win gold in a thrilling contest with silver medallists Narongdech Taparak and Muktapha Changhin (THA). Bronze went to Frada Saleh and Cintya Nariska (INA).
On day two, Arbilon (PHI) was on the podium again but only winning bronze after a disqualification. Dea Putri (INA) was the women’s individual Triathle champion, defeating Sanruthai Aransiri (THA) – a pentathlete who finished 11th at the 2018 Asian Games and 15th at the 2019 Asia/Oceania Championships and Olympic Qualifier.
In the men’s event, Michael Comaling (PHI) gave the home crowd an unforgettable highlight to celebrate as he became individual Triathle champion ahead of silver medallist Phurit Yohuang (THA) and bronze medallist Taufik (INA).
On day three, the Triathle Mixed Relay took centre stage and Putri (INA) claimed her second gold medal alongside Saleh (INA). Thailand () were only 4sec behind and the hosts picked up their fifth medal of the competition as Arbilon (PHI) and Comaling (PHI) teamed up for bronze.
UIPM President Dr Klaus Schormann said: “This competition was a historic landmark for our Modern Pentathlon movement, with two UIPM development sports featuring on the programme of the Southeast Asian Games for the first time.
“We have seen exciting progress in this region with evidence of countries such as Thailand producing athletes capable of competing at continental and global level. The standard in Triathle and Laser Run was high and this was wonderful to see.
“I’m sure the promotion resulting from the 30th SEA Games will help us continue to make progress in Southeast Asia, and we are actively recruiting new member nations in this region.
“I congratulate the Philippines on organizing this multi-sport festival with great determination and passion, overcoming bad weather and creating a true showcase for our sports and all the others on the programme.
“Richard Gomez, President of the Philippine Modern Pentathlon Association, and his volunteer team were excellent hosts and gave the competition a lot of support. There was also great work from Bernhard Petruschinski, Member of the UIPM Technical Committee, and from UIPM Development Manager Maxime Papillon throughout the test event and the competition.”
On December 7, President Dr Schormann joined all five Presidents from participating National Federations in a tree-planting ceremony in recognition of the first SEA Games to include UIPM Sports.
Eight is a lucky number in many parts of Asia so the group planted eight trees in a symbolic message relating to the 125th anniversary of the Olympic movement and in memory of the founder of Modern Pentathlon, Baron Pierre de Coubertin.