Above: TeamSG para swimmers for Singapore 2023 edition (Photo credit: Singapore Disability Sports Council – Andy Chua)
After a four-year hiatus, the Citi Para Swimming World Series is returning to Singapore, with 15 Team Singapore para swimmers set to compete on home ground at the OCBC Aquatic Centre from April 29th to May 1st, 2023. Local fans can look forward to cheering on their favourite para swimmers, including the likes of Paralympians Yip Pin Xiu, Toh Wei Soong and Sophie Soon, as well as ASEAN Para Games medalists Colin Soon, Wong Zhi Wei and Danielle Moi.
Debutants like Jareth Wong and Robby Yeo will also be making up Team Singapore. The initiative is aimed at ensuring that the event is more than a celebration of top-level competition, but also a catalyst for the development of the next generation of para swimmers in Singapore.
“Para swimming is an important and growing sport in Singapore, and we are proud to have the opportunity to host this prestigious event in our country, to showcase its thrills to Singaporeans. Our para swimmers have been training hard, and we are confident that they will put on their best performances, particularly with the support of our home crowd,” says Ms Kelly Fan, Executive Director, SDSC.
Over 150 para swimmers from all over the world will also be joining the competition, adding to the excitement of the event. 6-time-Ironman-winner-turned-
Hong Kong’s Tang shares, “I can take the opportunity to observe new swimmers from various countries and understand the strength of swimmers after the epidemic by participating in the competition in Singapore. I hope to strive for the result that can meet the Minimum Qualification Standard and qualify for the 2024 Paralympics in the competition.”
For Schnerndorf, the Singapore leg would be one where she intends to prepare for the World Championships later this year. “I intend to use it as training for the key competitions to come and get my spot on the Brazilian team for the French Paralympic Games next year.”
Toyota has committed to supporting the Singapore legs as the main local organising committee sponsor for 2023 and 2024, with a contribution of $200,000 over the two years.
“At Toyota, we aim to enrich lives around the world with the most responsible ways of moving people, creating a more inclusive and sustainable society for all to challenge the impossible and experience the freedom of movement,” shares Mr Jaja Ishibashi, General Manager, Toyota Marketing Services Department.
“We strongly believe that as long as we are free to move, anything is possible. In the 2019 edition, the athletes at the games have displayed this and inspired us greatly, which is why Toyota remains committed to supporting the Singapore editions for 2023 and 2024. When our communities and customers feel the thrill and joy of movement, we are one step closer to achieving “Mobility for All”.”
The Singapore leg – which is the only Asian stop – marks the fifth out of nine in the 2023 Series. Team Singapore para swimmers have participated in 2 legs thus far, and collected 3 gold and 5 bronze medals.
The Singapore leg also marks an opportunity for Singaporeans to rally behind local athletes as they take on the world’s best. Moreover, with the addition of a festive village, pass holders can enjoy free snacks, goodies and games like archery and mini-bowling, as well as photo opportunities with Merli, the Merlion. With ticket prices starting from $10 for a day pass and $25 for a three-day season pass, the event offers an affordable and unforgettable experience for the whole family.
Free entry is available for persons with disabilities to ensure that everyone can experience the excitement of the competition.The SDSC hopes that through its efforts, more Singaporeans will come and be a part of this momentous occasion, show their support for Team Singapore, and witness the triumph of the human spirit.
Day and season passes are available on SISTIC, the official ticketing partner for the event. Mediacorp, the official broadcast partner, will also be livestreaming the heats and finals on MeWatch and its YouTube channel.
Dr Teo-Koh Sock Miang, President, SDSC, said, “Nothing beats the rare experience of witnessing world-class para swimming on home ground and bringing your red and whites to cheer on our local para swimmers. As the national sports body for para sports in Singapore, SDSC aims to rally Singaporeans behind para athletes around the world and locally. We believe that para sports can inspire and unite people, and we hope to see Singaporeans come out in full force to support these individuals, who work hard to defy their limits.”
Team Singapore swimmer, Yip Pin Xiu, shares, “The upcoming Singapore leg will be my third time racing on home ground and I’m excited for it because all my friends, family, and supporters know that I compete but them being able to see me actually do it is different. The World Series is a unique racing format and really fun with the point system. Everybody just races against each other, so there’s a little bit more pressure but I’m looking forward to it and to do my best. It’ll be part of my lead up for the World Championships in August where I hope to retain my titles. What I want to do is to continue strategising our race plans, try to get our taper done well so that we will be ready for Manchester when the time comes.”
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