Over the past week, several of our NIST students have competed in both national and international tournaments in their respective sports, earning not only top placings, but also the chance to advance further to even more notable opportunities. As a school, we strongly believe in inspiring students to pursue their passions and excel as individuals and as a part of the greater community. We’re delighted that these students, as well as many others, have achieved so much while balancing their dedication with their studies.
On the international stage, Victor Salmon in Year 12 has developed a reputation as being one of the world’s best young wakeboarders. Having begun the sport at a very young age, he has steadily improved throughout his time at NIST, building experience at competitions in Thailand and abroad before turning pro in 2014. In the time since, he has earned top finishes in events across Germany, France, Denmark and the UK.
This past weekend he competed at the 2017 World Wakeboard Association (WWA) Wake Park World Championship, held at Camsur Watersports Complex in the Philippines. Many of the best wakeboarders in the world participated, including Oli Derome, Aaron Gunn, Guenther Oka and others well known in the sport, yet Victor topped his previous accomplishments with top five placings in traditional wakeboard, wakeskate and pro features. Even more impressively, he netted the gold medal in the winch, a relatively new addition to the sport that is becoming increasingly popular.
Meanwhile, three lady Falcons demonstrated just how strong their commitment is at the Thailand National Gymnastics Championship, held from 27 to 30 September at the Fashion Island Shopping Center. When it comes to the physical demands of gymnastics, there is no substitute for dedication, commitment, training and a desire to perform at the highest levels of the sport. NIST gymnasts exemplify all of these attributes and more.
Facing off against many of the country’s best gymnasts, 11 members of the NIST Falcons Gymnastics Team joined the competition: Hannelore Boone, Kadidja Djombana, Paris Ingpochai, Rei Isaka, Ayaka Kobayashi, Praan Kulnides, Maia Rankine-Griffith, Neine Reancharoensuk, Ninnin Reancharoensuk, Jasmine Tantiuvanont and Alyssa Thai. Their performances as a whole provided strong evidence of the excellent training they have received under NIST’s in-house staff of professional coaches, as well as the school’s new facilities dedicated to the sport.
While all of the Falcons gymnasts excelled at the competition, three in particular earned impressive accolades by the final day. Ninnin Reancharoensuk (Year 8) earned a first place finish on the beam event in the under-15 group, and Maia Rankine-Griffith (Year 10) placed second in the vault and seized a second gold for the Falcons in her floor routine in the under-15 group. The biggest moment came for Jasmine Tantiuvanont (Year 10) in the over-15 group, who achieved third place in both the bar and floor routine events. Given the strength of her performance, she had the honor of being selected as one of only eleven gymnasts to join the Road to Tokyo Training Camp, intended to prepare high-performing gymnasts for the upcoming Southeast Asia Games and Tokyo Olympics in 2020.
As a school, we cannot be more delighted with the results that our young athletes have achieved. Success in any sport requires patience, resolve and immense responsibility. To see our Falcons achieve excellence to this degree serves as an even stronger testament to their character and ability to persevere. Congratulations!