Winter sports: S'pore to host first SEA short track speed skating seminar for officials

SINGAPORE - The first short track speed skating seminar for officials in South-east Asia will be held this week in Singapore.

The three-day programme from Friday to Sunday (Nov 18-20) at the Singapore Sports Hub is endorsed by the International Skating Union (ISU).

It is aimed at building capabilities across different officiating roles including referee, starter, competitor steward, block steward, time-keeper and lap counter for officials in the region.

Participants will also be able to assist and gain race officiating experience on Saturday at The Rink @ JCube in an official time trial for the Singapore national short track team.

Reinier Oostheim, member of the ISU short track speed skating technical committee, has arrived from Germany to facilitate the programme.

He said: "I am looking forward to this seminar and to helping Singapore raise the bar for officiating standards in the region. As short track continues to pick up speed in South-east Asia, we must be prepared with a critical pool of qualified officials."

Singapore is currently the only country in South-east Asia to have internationally accredited officials as well as be equipped with ISU-approved short track speed skating safety padding and photo finish electronic timing system complete with transponders.

These are essential for hosting international competitions.

President of Singapore Ice Skating Association Sonja Chong said: "With short track making a debut at SEA Games 2017, the region is poised for rapid growth in terms of public interest, athlete development and short track events.

"Singapore has gained valuable experience in hosting both international and regional competitions over the past few years. It is therefore imperative for us to continue to expand our capabilities in organising high-level races.

"We are very happy to have the support of the International Skating Union to drive this momentum in South-east Asia."