Two days into the 2015 Southeast Asia Games, the unquestioned stars have been Vietnam’s Vien Nguyen and Singapore’s Joseph Schooling.
The two have combined for 6 total wins thus far, highlighted by impressive doubles and high-ranking times.
Sport Singapore has published videos of all 6 races on their YouTube page, and you can check them out below, intercut with our own meet recap reports from Braden Keith.
You can find more race videos (and video footage of other Southeast Asia Games sports) on the Sport Singapore YouTube page, which you can find here.
Vien Thi Anh Nguyen – Day 1
The first four finals of the day all saw new SEA Games Records, and despite no swims yet from the meet’s biggest star (Joseph Schooling of Singapore), the country of Vietnam, as a whole, will come out of the day like roses.
That’s because they already took three gold medals to lead the tallies, including a brutal double from their biggest star Thi Anh Nguyen, who won both the women’s 800 free and the women’s 400 IM, with races that started precisely 48 minutes apart.
First, she swam to a new Meet Record in the 800 free, with an 8:34.35. That broke the old Meet Record of 8:35.41 set by Singapore’s Lynette Lim in 2009, a suit-aided swim, as well as her own Vietnamese National Record of 8:40.75.
Less than an hour later, Nguyen once again blew the field away in the women’s 400 IM and swam a 4:42.88 for victory. That again was a new Meet Record, breaking her swim from prelims (4:43.93), and before that her 4:46.16 from the 2013 edition of the meet.
The 18-year old Nguyen trains in the United States at the Saint Augustine Swim Club for a combination of Frank Holleman and her Vietnamese coach Dang Anh Tua. In three swims so far at this meet, she has three Meet Records.
Women’s 800 free
Women’s 400 IM
Joseph Schooling – Day 2
Schooling sat out the SEA Games’ first day of competition, but began his meet in the men’s 100 free on Sunday. He touched there in 48.58, which is not only his first time under 50 seconds, but crushed the National Record by well over a second. The old mark of 49.89 was done by Zheng Wen Quah at the Singapore Age Group Championships in March.
Schooling’s second gold medal of the day was not a solo effort, as he led-off Singapore’s 800 free relay in 1:47.79 en route to a 7:18.14 victory. That broke the SEA Games Record by eight seconds, and won by 12 seconds ahead of Malaysia.
Schooling’s leadoff leg broke the Singapore National Record and SEA Games Record (a SEA Games record that was only a day old), and the overall relay tally did the same.
Men’s 100 free
Men’s 4×200 free relay
Vien Thi Anh Nguyen – Day 2
On the women’s side, Thi Anh Nguyen dominated another day of competition with two more gold medals. She added wins in the 200 backstroke and 200 IM on Sunday to go with victories in the 800 free and 400 IM on Saturday, and now has broken Games Records in four events over just two days of competition.
While she’s been pushing forward through a tough schedule, it’s clear that Nguyen is not going all-in for personal bests at this meet (perhaps saving those for the World Championships in two months). She’s so far ahead of her competition, however, that it hasn’t seemed to matter yet.
In the 200 backstroke, her first gold on Sunday, Nguyen swam 2:14.12 to break her own 2013 record of 2:14.80 (she’s been 2:12). Indonesia’s Yessy Yosaputra took 2nd more than three seconds slower in 2:17.17, and the Philippines’ Roxanne Yu was 3rd in 2:18.45.
Later in the 200 IM, Nguyen swam 2:13.53 to win by an even bigger five-second margin, and break the Meet Record that had belonged to Malaysia’s Yi Ting Siow (2:14.57) from 2009.