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Foreigners claim top spots at VnExpress's Aquaman Vietnam

By Nhat Lam   October 5, 2022 | 01:37 am PT
Three foreign athletes enjoyed top positions at VnExpress's Aquaman Vietnam, the country's first aquathlon held last weekend.

Carlie Bilke was the first woman to cross the finish line of Aquaman Vietnam's Sprint Aqua race at Tra Co Beach, Quang Ninh Province. The Australian runner said she had participated in many triathlons in her home country, but quitted after hurting her ankle last December.

Despite her injury, Bilke returned to practice over two months ago by running and swimming six days a week. She said the weather was her concern, as it was rainy and windy in the two days before the race.

Australian Carlie Bilke is the female champion of Aquaman Vietnam’s Aqua Sprint title. Photo by VnExpress/Pham Chieu

Australian Carlie Bilke is the female champion of Aquaman Vietnam’s Aqua Sprint. Photo by VnExpress/Pham Chieu

But it then turned out better, providing her a wonderful experience. "At first I was worried a bit about the strong waves and the crowd. It was less crowded after the U-turn, so I could swim faster and reached the transition area earlier," Bilke said.

"The running trail was great, as it was flat and not slippery, but my legs felt a bit tired. Overall, the experience was wonderful," she said.

Bilke said she would join Aquaman Vietnam's next competition.

Another foreign female athlete, Indian Nashom Bengum Sayed, came in third in the Sprint Aqua race. The 13-year-old said she did not expect a good result as her neck was injured before the event.

Indian Nashom Bengum Sayed, 13, is among the top three female athletes at the Aqua Sprint title. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran

Indian Nashom Bengum Sayed, 13, is among the top three female athletes in the Aqua Sprint race. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran

Nashom is a member of her school's swimming team, but she was met with challenges by the strong waves in Quang Ninh. "Swimming was hard at first, as I was pushed back by the waves," the girl said.

She admitted that running was not her strength. "I was nearly exhausted in the final sprint, but I was lucky that my best friend was there. She held my hand, and gave me the energy to cross the finish line."

Malaysian Tan Cheng Joo claimed the third spot of the Aquaman Relay race. He is a member of Hanoi-based running club TimesCity Runners, and joined the event with a son of his colleague.

Malaysian athlete Tan Cheng Joo wins the third prize of Aquaman Vietnam’s Aquaman Relay title. Photo by VnExpress/Thao Mien

Malaysian athlete Tan Cheng Joo wins the third prize of Aquaman Vietnam’s Aquaman Relay race. Photo by VnExpress/Thao Mien

He also considered weather as one of the concerns, but added he was happy with the challenges.

"I will continue to participate in the next competitions held by VnExpress, including the VnExpress Marathon Hanoi Midnight in November," Tan said, adding that he was impressed by the organization of those events.

 
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