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Mok Ying Ren (Part 1 of 2)
  • October 17th, 2007

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Mok Yin Ren representing Singapore

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Mok Ying Ren, long-distance runner and national triathlete. Known as Mok to his friends, this 19 year-old sensation is headed to Thailand this year for the SEA Games. He will be competing in triathlon (1.5km swim, 40km cycle, 10km run).

This talented athlete runs anything from 1500m, to half-marathons. Recently, he won the Men’s Closed Category at the Army Half Marathon with a time of 1hr 16min. At this year’s Singapore Open, he bagged 1 of 2 gold medals won for Singapore.


Personal Data

Name: Mok Ying Ren
Nickname: Mok
Height: 172 cm
Weight: 62 kg
Date of Birth: 6 July 1988
Siblings: 14 yr-old sister who also competes in triathlon


Statistics

Coach: currently self-coached but has advisors for the various triathlon disciplines

  • Swimming: Coach Zhao
  • Running: Mr Steven Quek
  • Cycling: Mr Ramlan

Personal Best:

  • 1500m: 4.13 (2006 National Inter-school track and field champs)
  • 5000m: 16.38 (2007 Singapore Open)
  • 10km road: 34min 7 secs (2007 Mizuno Wave Run)
  • 21km: 1hr 16min (2007 Army Half Marathon)
  • Triathlon: 2 hr 2min(2007 OSIM Singapore Asian Triathlon Champs)

Track/Tri Highlights or Achievements:

2007

  • Army half-marathon, Men’s closed, 1st
  • OSIM Singapore Asian Triathlon Champs, U23 Elite 8th, 1st Singaporean
  • Triathlon Sea Games time trial, 1st
  • Singapore Open 5000m, Men’s Open, 1st

2006

  • China Asian Champs Triathlon, Men U23 19th, 1st Singaporean
  • Multi-sport champion for all duathlons, biathlons, triathlon, aquathlons in Singapore
  • National Inter-school track and field champs 1500m, A-div, 2nd
  • National Inter-school track and field champs 5000m, A-div, 3rd

2005

  • Malaysia 100 Plus International triathlon, KL Malaysia, Men 16-29yrs, 1st
  • National Inter-school cross-country champs A-div, 1st
  • National Inter-school track and field Champs 5000m, A-div, 4th

Sponsors: New Balance, Scott Bicycle, Ryders Eyewear

The Interview

Tell us about your background, what are you doing now? eg; studying, working, etc

I am a Rafflesian, having gone to Raffles Institution and Raffles Junior College. After ‘A’ levels last year, I went to serve 6 months of National Service, before being disrupted to enter medical school at National University of Singapore. Currently, I am a full-time student-athlete, averaging 10 hours of studying and schooling a day, with another 4-5 hours of training.

How has your sponsor/school/family/friends supported you in your effort to pursue your passion

I have a very supportive family: my parents help me with transport to trainings, my mother takes care of my nutrition, feeding the whole family healthier meals consisting of more fruits and vegetables, my family comes down for all my races to cheer me on.

My friends are understanding and helpful. They know that I spend a lot of time on training, thus join me in my ‘mugging’ sessions.

Triathlon is an expensive sport, and as a student I am glad to have sponsors to ease the financial burden on my family.

How did you get started in Track & Field and your foray in Tri?

Back in Primary 4, I enrolled in Singapore Swimming Club, where I trained 10x a week, waking up as early as 4.30am for morning sessions. As a competitive swimmer, I represented Singapore at age-group level and after 7 years of intensive swimming training, I grew bored of looking at the blue line at the bottom of the swimming pool while swimming as many as 120 laps.

My change of sport happened at Raffles Junior College, where I met cross-country coach Mr Steven Quek. He helped me develop my running talent and taught me the art of using sports science in training. My times started to improve, and I could see the difference good training made, compared to my first running race back in Secondary 1, where I came in 11th in the National Inter-school cross country champs.

I knew that as an emerging runner and with a swimming background, I should be able to do well in a multi-sport such as triathlon. Through some research over the internet, I picked up triathlon at junior college, and before I knew it, I was in the National triathlon team.

What is your goal for this year and what is your long term goal?

I am aiming to bring back the Gold Medal from this year’s Sea Games for triathlon. Long term, I would like to qualify for the Hawaii iron-man and clock a good time for a marathon.

Tommorrow Mok Ying Ren will talk about his thoughts on the future of Singapore Athletics, his race preparations, SEA Games planning and more

Part 2 will be published tommorrow

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Posted by Uncle Sha.
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