Madhya Pradesh’s Neha Thakur Clinches Silver in Sailing at Asian Games
Neha Thakur, a 17-year-old farmer’s daughter from Madhya Pradesh, secures a silver medal in the Girl’s Dinghy – ILCA4 category at the Asian Games.
In a remarkable achievement, 17-year-old Neha Thakur from Madhya Pradesh brought home a silver medal for India in the Asian Games sailing competition. She excelled in the Girl’s Dinghy – ILCA4 category, showcasing her talent at the NBX Sailing Centre in Ningbo.
Neha, a 12th-grade student, embarked on her sailing journey at the National Sailing School in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, at a very young age. After 11 races in her category, she secured the second position, with Noppassorn Khunboonjan of Thailand clinching the gold medal.
After the 10th race, Neha had a net score (penalty points) of 23, while the Thai sailor had 14 points. Jaekyoung Seol from the Republic of Korea finished third with a net score of 27.
In the 11th race, Neha finished fourth, earning 4 race points. The Thai sailor came second in that race, following Singapore’s Keira Marie Carlyle. Although Korea’s Seol secured third place in the 11th race, her performance was insufficient to overtake Neha for the second position.
Neha’s journey to this achievement is particularly inspiring, as she hails from a middle-class family in Amaltaj village, Dewas district, Madhya Pradesh. Her father, Mukesh Kumar Thakur, is a farmer, while her mother, Reena Thakur, is a homemaker.
Last year, Neha won a bronze medal at the Asian Sailing Championships held in Abu Dhabi, which earned her a spot in the Asian Games.
Neha’s sailing talent was identified and nurtured by the National Sailing School in Bhopal. Capt. Jitendra Dixit, Secretary-General of the Yachting Federation of India (YAI), praised her outstanding performance, stating, “She sailed fantastically throughout and won her first medal for the country in the Asian Games.” He also mentioned that Neha had caught YAI’s attention a couple of years ago with her impressive performances in the national circuit. “We picked her up from there and provided her with further training. She has been training in Europe and participating in sailing events abroad, but this is her first medal of this nature,” he added.
The YAI holds high hopes for the Asian Games competitions in Hangzhou and anticipates winning at least three more medals on the final day of competitions scheduled for Wednesday.