Fast start for local athletic league
Foul weather could not prevent strong competition in Wan Chai
Hong Kong's first athletic competition of 2008 took place over the weekend in Wan Chai. The Athletics League 2008 - Round One, organised by the Hong Kong Amateur Athletic Association (HKAAA), featured noteworthy performances despite the cold, wind and rain.
More than 700 athletes competed in 12 categories.
On the first day, Hong Kong record holder Leung Ki-ho won the men's 200 metres. He clocked 21.40 seconds - 0.80 seconds faster than second-placed Lau Yu-leong and well ahead of Wong Ka-chun, who came in third with a time of 22.40 seconds.
In the women's 200m race, Leung Hau-sze took the title with a time of 25.13 seconds, while Fong Yee-pui came second with 25.52 seconds, narrowly beating third-placed Tang Uen-shan.
In middle-distance events, Lo Wing-hei clocked 2 minutes 26.22 seconds (2:26.22) to win the women's 800m crown. Lo was followed by Michelle Cheung in 2:27.33, while the third place went to Ho Mei-ki.
The competition in the sprints on day two was equally vigorous. Both Hong Kong record holders in the 100m, Tang Yik-chun (men) and Wan Kin-yee (women), took part in the events.
Wan lived up to her reputation, and ran away with the women's 100m title in 12.07 seconds. It was great preparation for the third Asian Indoor Athletic Championships, which will be held in Doha, Qatar, later this month.
Chan Ho-yee ran in second with a time of 12.18 seconds, while Hui Man-ling came third.
The competition in the men's 100m was even tougher, with local athletes having improved a lot over the past year. Lai Chun-ho won the race in 10.65 seconds, with Tang finishing out of the top three. Lai was just 0.10 seconds faster than second-placed Leung Chun-wai, while Lau Yu-leong finished third.
In the 110m hurdles, Tang Hon-sing captured the title in the men's category. His time of 14.95 seconds was just 0.04 seconds faster than second-placed Lo Ngai-fung.
The Athletics League 2008 consists of five rounds. After the first four rounds, the top eight athletes in each event will compete in the finals.
Rounds 2, 3 and 4 of the Athletics League are scheduled for April 12 and 13, June 1, and September 27 and 28, respectively.
The fifth and final round will be held on November 2.