National Records Broken at Singapore’s First Depth Competition

The first ever Singapore freediving depth competition ended successfully after three days of exciting results. Organized by Apnea Association of Singapore (AAS) with AIDA Head Judge John Wright, and hosted by Apnea Bali, 20 athletes participated in the AAS Depth Championships 2018 from 20 – 22 September in Tulamben, Bali.

Singapore is a small country, but it already has six freediving schools. The competition sought to bring the freediving community from Singapore together and raise the awareness of the sport and its athletes. Besides our local athletes, we were also graced with outstanding international athletes from Thailand, South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia, Panama, South Africa, USA, France, Germany, and Australia.

The competition saw multiple national records broken for Thailand, Panama, Singapore, and South Korea. 19-year-old Keerapat Laowakul from Thailand reset his national record with a CNF dive to 37 m. Maria Vergara set two national records for Panama– a CWT dive to 41 m and a FIM dive to 45m. Jessie Kim from South Korea also reset her national record with a FIM dive to 64 m.

Singaporean newcomer and hat trick medal winner, Lim Yee Hui doing a CWT dive.

Thibault Guignes from France on his way to a massive 105m FIM

Representing Singapore, Fu Xingqiang achieves both his personal best and a new national record with a CWT dive to 73 m and Jonathan Chong sets a new national record with a FIM dive to 53 m.

Fu Xingqiang of Singapore breaks his own national record with a whooping CWT dive to 73m.

This competition was novel in many ways. It is the first time in a competition that announced performances were done online, rather than manually, an idea by AAS administrator, Dorcas Koo. This new system greatly increased the convenience of both competitors and administrators.

This competition saw the debut of award-winning Kohei Ueno as the official photographer and Mark Cheung as the official videographer. With their amazing footages, it is no surprise that the event has reached nearly 40K viewers on Facebook.

The competition also awarded sustainable wooden medals, designed by the AAS designer, Afiza Affandi. These beautiful tokens of achievement are one of a kind!



The lucky winners of these medals went to Thibault Guignes from France who was the best overall male performer, Marc Anop from the USA who came in second, and Michael Hansen from Australia who came in third. Michael also won the Best Newcomer Male award. The Best Singaporean Male award went to Jonathan Chong.

The ladies did very well as well, with Jessie Kim from South Korea taking first place, Natalie Rudman from South Africa taking second place, and Lim Yee Hui from Singapore taking third place. Yee Hui also won the Best Singaporean and Best Newcomer awards for female.


Our top performers with their wooden medals. Top: Jessie Kim, Lim Yee Hui, Jonathan Chong, and Michael Hansen; Bottom: Thibault Guignes, Natalie Rudman, and Marc Anop


AAS organizing committee. From left: Fu Xingqiang, Dorcas Koo, Kohei Ueno, Mark Cheung, Afiza Affandi, and John Wright.

The AAS team thanks sponsors PADI Freediver and Beuchat, host Apnea Bali who provided the venue, expertise, and safety crew; judges John Wright, Trista Fontana, and Ying Chitralada S. and all athletes for their amazing performances!

Watch the following video for some highlights!

1 Comment

  1. March 31, 2019 at 3:20 am

    How do they hold their breath and withstand such high pressures at such depths ? During a solo travel across Indonesia did my “3 day diving course” at “Dive Concepts” in Tulamben in Bali. Happened to meet Julia.Moses from Argentina, the free-diving Instructor of the “Apnea Bali Freediving” resort in Tulamben. She was a teacher in “FREE-DIVING” and could hold her breath for a maximum of 5 minutes while free diving to depths of 40 meters and more! If seen on the road she looked ordinary and would not attract a second glance, a very unassuming ordinary lady.Truly Amazzing.

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