Bhutan bagged 3 gold, 1 silver and 7 bronze medals in the 50th Asian Bodybuilding and Physique Championships held from September 2-7 in Thimphu, Bhutan’s best performance so far in an international competition.
Bhutan was also ranked second in the men’s team competition behind Iran. Iran led the scoreboard with 6 Gold and 5 Silver. Iran’s Mahdi Sabzerai was crowned Mr Asia.
In the overall category Bhutan came fourth out of 11 countries beating much bigger countries like China, India and Malaysia to name a few.
A total of 19 men and 7 women represented Bhutan in the competition of numerous categories. Sangay Tsheltrim retained his Gold in the men’s athletic Physique up to 175cm category and won a bronze in men’s Fitness Physique over 165-centimetre category. Thinley Dorji, 25, bagged gold in men’s fitness over 165-centimetre category. Tsheten Drukpa bagged gold in the men’s bodybuilding up to 55kg category. Kinley Penjore, 47, bagged silver in the men’s fitness in 165-centimetre category and Bimal Gurung, 27, won a bronze.
None of the 7 women participants won a medal but Yeatoeh Lhamo Penjore made it to 4th place and Damcho Zam made it to the top 5 in the women’s model physique up to 165 cm catgory.
“I would like to let my supporters and friends know that between September 2014 and September 2016, I have won 2 Gold, 1 Silver and 2 bronze medals, I cannot ask for more,” Sangay Tsheltrim said after he retained his Gold. “I will be taking part in the upcoming world Championship on 29th November, 2016 at Pataya (Bangkok) and that will be my last competition.”
“As promised, I have raised my country’s flag and the national anthem brought tears of joy into my eyes and now it is time to prepare for the world championship,” said Thinley Dorji who won gold in men’s fitness over 165-centimetre category.
Lyonchen Tshering Tobgay said, “Hearty congratulations to team Bhutan for their outstanding performance at the 50th Asian Bodybuilding Championships.”
The General Secretary of Bhutan Body building and weightlifting Federation, Wangchuk, said, “It was great that athletes made our nation pride, it is all because of their hard work and dedication.”
The 50th Asian Bodybuilding and Physique Championship saw over 450 international athletes and officials from 28 Asian countries.
The Bhutan Bodybuilding and weightlifting Federation was established in 2002. The federation consists of two sports-weightlifting and bodybuilding. Its activities began in 2004 after the federation found a small room, which could serve as a gym. Since its establishment more than hundred members have registered for bodybuilding. Weightlifting is yet to take off due to unavailability of space.
The federation is a member of both ABF and IFBB and AWF and the IWF.