A strong 17-member Hong Kong squad left yesterday for the Asian championships in Pune, India, with a gold medal their target.
The men's 4x100 metres relay team, who captured Hong Kong's first ever silver medal at the last Asian championships in Kobe, Japan, two years ago, are aiming to go one better at the July 3-7 event.
"This is our major target of the year and we are confident," said Amateur Athletics Association senior vice chairman Simon Yeung Sai-mo. "We are sending the same squad that took part in the London Olympics Games with Japan our major obstacle."
He said China were not considered a major threat as the mainlanders were busy preparing for the National Games.
"Most of their national team members have gone back to their home provinces as the National Games are approaching. They have difficulty assembling a strong relay team," said Yeung.
The quartet of Tang Yik-chun, Lai Chun-ho, Ng Ka-fung and Tsui Chi-ho set a Hong Kong record 38.47 seconds on their way to qualifying as the fastest Asian team for the 2012 Olympic Games, but they failed to reach the final in London. They won the Taiwan International Open in May in a mediocre 39.15 seconds, and were disqualified in an open meet in Prague last month.
Meanwhile, javelin thrower Hui Wai-hei bettered his own Hong Kong record to 63.02 metres from 59.93m at the Inter-City Championships at Tseung Kwan O Sports Ground yesterday, but had to settle for a bronze medal with Li Yingchang of Zhejiang province winning in 70.66m.