Conjugate stem-changing e > i verbs: competir, reir, servir in El Presente (present tense)

Competir, reir, and servir are semi-regular verbs in Spanish in El Presente because the stem changes in some forms.

Have a look at their conjugation:

  COMPETIR
to compete
SERVIR
to serve
REIR
to laugh
 yo compito
sirvo
río
  compites sirves ríes

él / ella / usted  

compite
sirve
ríe
nosotros  / nosotras 
competimos servimos
reímos
vosotros  / vosotras 
competís
servís
reís
ellos / ellas/ ustedes  
compiten sirven
ríen

Notice how for all three groups, the vowel -e- becomes -i- EXCEPT for nosotros/nosotras and vosotros/vosotras where it remains -e-.

Look at and listen to these examples:

Yo compito en los 100 metros libres de natación.
I compete in the 100 metres freestyle swimming.

sirves las mesas de fuera.
You serve the tables outside.

Ella se ríe mucho.
She laughs a lot.

Nosotros nos reímos siempre con esa película.
We always laugh at that movie.

Vosotras competís contra Francia.
You compete against France.

Ellos sirven a los clientes. 
They serve the customers.

You can see more verbs that follow this pattern: List of Spanish stem-changing (e > i) verbs in the present tense

Learn more about these related Spanish grammar topics

Examples and resources

sirves las mesas de fuera.
You serve the tables outside.


Yo compito en los 100 metros libres de natación.
I compete in the 100 metres freestyle swimming.


Nosotros nos reímos siempre con esa película.
We always laugh at that movie.


Vosotras competís contra Francia.
You compete against France.


Ellos sirven a los clientes. 
They serve the customers.


Ella se ríe mucho.
She laughs a lot.


Q&A

Mags

Kwiziq community member

18 October 2017

1 reply

Singular or plural?

In a question La policía (persguir) los.... I wasn't sure whether to put the verb in the Singular or plural. The answer is in the singular. Are there other cases where the singular is used for a group too?

Silvia

Kwiziq language super star

24 October 2017

24/10/17

Hola Mags, when the collective word ("la policía" in this case) is followed immediately by a verb, the noun is treated as singular and therefore the verb must be conjugated in the third person singular. However, if the group entity is followed by other words as the preposition "de", there is no consistency in the language and this means that you can choose any number. For example, you can say "un grupo de personas está en la calle" with the verb in the singular form, and also "un grupo de personas están en la calle", with the verb conjugated in the plural form. Both of them are considered correct as it doesn't exist any particular rule about this grammar point. Thank you very much for your question!
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