Pattaya windsurfers brought back pride and joy from the 29th Sea Games, held in Malaysia in August, returning with 2 gold medals and contributing to Thailand finishing runners-up to the host nation in the final overall medal table.
A special ceremony was held at the Surf Kitchen Restaurant in Jomtien on October 1 to celebrate the success of the Thai windsurfing team. Many civic dignitaries were in attendance to congratulate the victorious sailors including former city mayor Ittipol Khunplume, president of the Windsurf Association Pattaya and Vice Admiral Sorayut Danegtet, vice president of the Windsurf Association Thailand.
The two gold medals performances came in the RS1 Mens competition, with ‘Oat’ Nattapong Phonoparat emerging as the champion, and the RS1 Womens category where ‘Daow’ Siriporn Kaewduang-ngam proved to be too good for her international rivals.
The Windsurf Association subsequently sent the athletes to hone their skills in the RSX World Champions 2017 in Japan in September to prepare for the next Olympic Games, also to be held in Japan in 2020. ‘Oat’ Nattapong is currently ranked number 50 in the world in the Gold and Silver fleet and this month both he and Daow will remain in Pattaya and practice locally to prepare for upcoming competitions.
Pattaya councilors at the meeting congratulated the two sailors on their achievements and stated that they are proud to have such skilled youths to represent Thailand and Pattaya, bringing joy to the country. Thailand’s windsurfing has now stepped up to yet another level and looks set to grow further going forward.