Goh takes Australian title

Singaporean short track speed skater Cheyenne Goh, 18, competing at the Australian Open Championships in Melbourne, where she was unbeaten in the 500m, 1,000m, 1,500m and 3,000m.
Singaporean short track speed skater Cheyenne Goh, 18, competing at the Australian Open Championships in Melbourne, where she was unbeaten in the 500m, 1,000m, 1,500m and 3,000m.PHOTO COURTESY OF JONATHAN TSUI

S'pore speed skater wins all her events to sweep senior ladies crown on her Melbourne debut

Less than three weeks after cementing her spot as Singapore's first Winter Olympian, short track speed skater Cheyenne Goh's star continues to shine.

The 18-year-old was crowned the senior ladies champion at the Dec 8-10 Australian Open Championships in her maiden appearance at the event.

More than 110 skaters from eight countries competed across six divisions at the competition, which was held in Melbourne.

Goh and three other Singapore skaters each competed in four different age divisions with each skater needing to race three distances, followed by a super final. Points were then accumulated for a skater's overall divisional classification.

Goh, who was named The Straits Times' Star of the Month for November, finished first in all the senior ladies events - the 1,500m, which she will compete in at February's Pyeongchang Winter Olympics; 500m, 1,000m and the 3,000m super final.

There were three other competitors in the senior ladies category.

Fellow Singaporean Amelia Chua, 11, was third in the midget ladies category while 13-year-old Amelia Soo was fifth in the sub-junior ladies division. Teenager Victoria Chin, 15, was ranked seventh in the junior ladies category.

National coach Chun Lee Kyung, who is in Melbourne with the Singapore team, noted that the championships were a "good experience" for Singapore's youth and senior skaters.

"As we will be gearing up our youth development programme to help (our junior skaters) realise their potential, exposure to such races will be valuable in helping them prepare for even bigger competitions," said the Korean, a four-time Olympic champion.

"Racing will help them learn their strengths and weaknesses so they can work on fixing any flaws through training and practice.

"For Cheyenne, this was also good competition practice as she continues to prepare for the Winter Olympics."

Singapore Ice Skating Association president Sonja Chong agreed, saying that Goh's participation at the Australian Open would help her hone her racing techniques and strategies ahead of the Pyeongchang Games.

She added: "(Goh's) presence in Melbourne is serving as a huge inspiration to the junior skaters who are competing alongside her and are passionate about following in her footsteps."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 12, 2017, with the headline 'Goh takes Australian title'. Print Edition | Subscribe