Singapore's indoor skydivers from iFly Singapore have taken off on the world stage in a strong international debut.
At the world's largest international skydiving meet, the Bodyflight World Challenge, Kyra Poh, 11, and her instructor Kristopher Reynolds, 34, won second place in the 2-way Dynamic Open category.
The annual event was held in Bedford in England from April 4-5.
"It was challenging to get used to a different wind tunnel and still try to do what we normally can, but we wanted to be better than we were last time in a competition," said Kyra.
She picked up the sport just three years ago and had competed only once, in a local event in 2012.
The second iFly team of Choo Yixuan, 12, and Joshua Tay, 32, finished sixth.
It was the first time Singaporeans had taken part in the event, featuring more than 100 teams from 27 countries.
Apart from coping with an unfamiliar wind tunnel, Kyra and Yixuanwere also competing overseas for the first time.
The teams were shuffled for a second category, the 2-way Open Free Fly. The girls finished fifth despite being the youngest competitors, even beating their instructors who placed eighth. "I was very happy and proud of myself that I could achieve a result of this kind," said an excited Yixuan.
The girls, who normally do 90-minute sessions in the wind tunnel, used figurines to visualise their required movements and even initiated some of their own routines.
Said Reynolds: "The girls actually came to me with some tricks they tried on their own for the Free Fly. I simply helped them put it together.
"Their skill level certainly impressed other competitors."
This article was published on April 7 in The Straits Times.
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