In 2012, Thai sailor Keerati Bualong became the first Thai to qualify for the Olympic Sailing Competition in the men’s one person dinghy Laser Standard class.
Relatively new to Laser Standard, Keerati secured his qualification at the Audi Laser World Championships in Germany in May 2012, making it into the regatta’s elite Gold Fleet in 27th position out of 168 sailors, ahead of all other contenders for the last 12 spots available for the 2012 Olympics.
He also won the gold medal in the 15th Asian Sailing Championships held in Langkawi, Malaysia, in February 2012. This adds to his impressive collection of gold medals from the Asian Games, SEA Games and other major international events (see Results).
At the 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition, he joined RS:X windsurfers and 2008 Olympians Ek Boonsawad and Napalai Tansai (who also sailed in the 2000 Olympics). While harsh conditions proved overwhelming for the Thai sailors who did not do as well as expected, Keerati, now 21, has already caught the attention of the international sailing community and is expected to achieve great things over the next ten years of his sailing career.