Updated July. 13, 2013 07:52
Rhythmic gymnast Son Yeon-jae, 19, is targeting the first medal in the individual competition category at the upcoming Summer Universiade Games in the rhythmic gymnastics history of Korea.
Son, who took a two-week onsite training session in Croatia, arrived Thursday in Kazan, Russia, the venue for this years Universiade Games. The games will be a pre-event to the World Championships that will take place in Ukraine in August. The Universiade event will bring together the top three performers in world rankings, namely Ganna Rizatdinova of Ukraine, Melitina Staniouta of Belarus, and Margarita Mamun of Russia.
Despite their participation, Son has a higher chance to win a medal at the upcoming event than ever before. Son has been gaining ground in performance records as she has won a medal in all of four FIG (Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique) World Cup tournaments that she participated this year. Notably, she acquired gold medals in the hoop and club categories to achieve the Triple Crown, after becoming the first Korean skater to win a gold medal overall in the individual competition category at the Asian championships. Kim Ji-yeong, an international rhythmic gymnastics judge, said Son Yeon-jae is increasingly enhancing her skills as she has participated in more competitions.
Son said, My initial goal is to advance to the finals in all four competitions, and then I will target a medal. The only medal the Korean rhythmic gymnastics community has won at a Universiade is a bronze medal in the group competition category at the Daegu Summer Universiade in Korea in 2003.