Students Bring Home Olympic Medals And Higher International Ranking

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19th July 2010, 02:04pm - Views: 1480


15 July 2010


Young Australians Come Home with Olympic Medals and a 

Higher International Ranking

The Australian student team excelled at the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) held this 

year in Astana, Kazakhstan, where 96 countries competed from 2 to 14 July.  For the first time,

Australia scored higher than major countries such as Iran, Romania and Bulgaria, each of which

had been the top-ranked country at IMO at some time since 1996.  The team won a Gold Medal, 3

Silver Medals and a Bronze Medal and improved its ranking from last year’s 23rd to 15th overall.

Aaron Chong of Doncaster Secondary College in Melbourne won the Gold Medal, having achieved

Silver last year. His overall placing was 18th out of the field of 517 contestants.  Sampson Wong

and Stacey Law, both of James Ruse Agricultural High School in Sydney, who each won Silver,

had achieved Gold and Bronze respectively in 2009.  Kiho Park, of Mount Waverley Secondary

College in Melbourne also won a Silver Medal. Sydney Grammar student, Timothy Large, who was

the youngest team member, won a Bronze Medal.  David Vasak, also from Sydney Grammar, was

given an Honourable Mention.

For the first time in many years Australia also defeated Taiwan, and they defeated Great Britain,

which had defeated Australia just a week before in the annual Mathematics Ashes, a traditional

contest undertaken during pre-IMO training.

The UNESCO-sanctioned IMO is the pinnacle of competition between students of pre-University

level from around the world and the premier international competition in mathematics for secondary

school students globally.  It first began in 1959 and is the oldest and largest of the Olympiads. 

Australia has entered for the past 29 years. 


Professor Peter Taylor, Executive Director of the not-for-profit Australian Mathematics Trust, which

is responsible for all aspects of Australia’s participation in the Olympiad program, said "Although

those who make the Olympiad teams are exceptionally talented, the IMO is the apex of a larger

program run by the Trust, in which hundreds of thousands of students participate and benefit from

annually.  It begins with the iconic Australian Mathematics Competition and continues through the

Mathematics Challenge for Young Australians and its enrichment stage”.

Professor Taylor acknowledged the extensive infrastructure of volunteer professionals who support

the work of the Trust and generously pass on their knowledge to the next generations.  He

particularly mentioned that IMO Team Leader and Director of Training, Dr Angelo Di Pasquale,

himself a former IMO medallist, plays a pivotal role in the success of the teams, but in turn gave

credit to the team for their harmony, years of hard work, and application.

The Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research provides sponsorship, which

widens access to the program to tens of thousands of students.  The Australian Association of

Mathematics Teachers and the Australian Mathematical Society also provide support.

For more information visit or for photos and interviews, please contact:.

Professor Peter Taylor, Australian Mathematics Trust,, 02 6201 2440; 0412 258 699

Jan Collins, Australian Mathematics Trust,, 02 6201 2954; 0415 922 433

Dr Angelo Di Pasquale, (IMO Team Leader) (03) 8344 4306; 0402 383 248


People Education Australian Mathematics Trust 3 image

People Education Australian Mathematics Trust 4 image


2 – 

          Aaron Chong,  Timothy Large, Stacey Lowe, Kiho Park, David Vasak,  Sampson Wong

(From left to right)

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