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Saturday, February 09, 2008

Ice rinks too small?

I was going to add this as a comment on my previous post, Olympic size ice rink for Singapore!, but it is becoming too long and philosphical... So here starts a new post!

Here's the Straits Times article after the Nationals where SISA "complained" about the ice rinks here being too small:
Ice rinks too small for talents to flourish

To be fair, the real reason behind Singapore not being able to compete on the figure skating world stage (including the Olympics, World Championships and Asian Games), is that without an Olympic size ice rink, Singapore can never join the International Skating Union (ISU).

It is not a lack of talent...
We have young skaters who have progressed rapidly in the last few years. These are our up-and-coming talents. Tragically, we also had talented skaters who we have "lost" because of the lack of prospects in the sport. They have grown up and given up competitive skating for their studies and other pursuits.

It is not a rink size vs training issue in Singapore...
Many of our skaters have progressed locally. Our most recent Novice and pre-Novice National Champions, Alexandria Wong and Ng Yi Ching, have been trained almost exclusively in Singapore.

If it was really just an issue with the inability to train in small rinks here, then any person can logically say: just send a skater to train overseas and represent Singapore. Unfortunately, even our new Junior champion, Sarah Paw, a Singaporean who lives and trains in Beijing, cannot represent Singapore, however talented she may be... simply because Singapore is not recognised by the ISU!

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Olympic size ice rink for Singapore!

The future for figure skating in Singapore is looking brighter... Today the Straits Times reported that CapitaMall Trust plans to build an olympic-size skating rink by 2009, as part of major ugrading of Jurong Entertainment Center.

This is certainly good news in a time when the sport is starting to gain momentum, with local skaters moving up to higher competitive levels. Indeed, this year's Nationals, held just last weekend, saw keen competition in the Novice & Junior levels for the first time! (I will write about the competition later, when I have more time to ponder about it. Meanwhile, I can only say I was experiencing "withdrawal symptoms" watching the competition while I cannot compete!)

With an olympic size rink, the Singapore Ice Skating Association will be able to join the International Skating Union and we can officially represent Singapore in ISU competitions!

News reports:
  - CapitaMall Trust to build Olympic-sized skating rink - from ChannelNewsAsia
  - S'pore to have first Olympic-sized ice skating rink - from AsiaOne News
  - S'pore to have first Olympic-sized ice skating rink - from Straits Times Online

Monday, February 04, 2008

ChowSkates - an online store for ice skaters

Over the weekend, I launched my online store

I will be so bold to say this is the first online store in Singapore for skaters! Right now most of the products are Riedell skates, but I will have other apparel and accessories up too.