Aitutaki sailor Joshua Ioane had little time to soak in being the Cook Islands flag bearer at the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China on Friday.
Following the experience, he was straight on the water on Saturday for his first race at the games.
The Araura College student is one of 100 sailors taking part in the sailing competition which is made up of 50 female and 50 male competitors.
The sailing races are being held at the Jinniu Lake Sailing Venue and will run up until August 23 and Ioane is racing in the Byte C11 at the games.
Ioane is a multi-talented sportsman and plays rugby, running, soccer and volleyball in season.
He has gained significant skills in sailing and qualified on his own merit in the sport of sailing at the Youth Olympic Games.
His coach, Taua Elisa has high hopes for his Aitutakian born and raised athlete and hopes to take him to the next level.
Ioane walked on his own into the Nanjing Sports Centre Stadium on Saturday night proudly carrying the Cook Islands flag while the rest of Team Cook Islands watched on and cheered from the grandstand.
Watching on proudly as the young Aitutaki sailor walked through colourful dancers and strobe lights were Team Cook Islands chef de mission George Hosking, golfers Memory Akama and Winston Kiria, swimmer Temaruata Strickland, golf manager Kurai Carfax-Foster and Ioane’s coach Taua Elisa.