Belau Games 2023 ended successfully with Koror State once again claiming to top position with a total of 247 medals, 100 gold, 87 silver and 60 bronze.
This year, two of Palau’s smallest states, both in size and population, showcased their strengths coming in 2nd and 3rd place in the number of gold medals won. Sonsorol took 2nd place in the overall number of medals won. It garnered 178 medals, 79 gold, 54 silver, and 45 bronze. Hatohobei had the 3rd highest number of gold medals, 31, 21 silver, and 24 bronze. Their total number of medals is 76, placing them in 4th place overall in total number of medals. Peleliu State took 3rd place overall with 125 total medals, 25 gold, 55 silver and 45 bronze.
Kayangel State, another small state, took 5th place in overall gold medals won, with 23 gold. But overall, it lost to Airai State, which had an overall count of 59 compared to Kayangel’s overall collection of 39.
Other States still dominated in different sports despite overall medal counts. For example, Team Airai dominated the Canoe races getting medals in every category. In Men’s Volleyball, the Angaur men’s team won the gold. In weightlifting events, Sonsorol and Hatohobei led, with Sonsorol getting 34 gold to Sonsorol with 10 gold.
To top off the event, during the closing ceremony, U.S. Airforce F-35 aircraft did a flyover “to wish Palau Happy Constitution Day and congratulate athletes at the Belau Games.” (By: L.N. Reklai)