Cheung King-lok lands bronze while Sarah Lee finishes sixth in time trial
Youngster earns third in the men's scratch race, while our Olympic star is sixth in the time trial
Promising Cheung King-lok continued Hong Kong's impressive record in the men's scratch race at the World Championships, but favourite Sarah Lee Wai-sze had a disappointing finish in the women's 500 metre time trial in Cali, Columbia, yesterday.
Cheung became the third Hong Kong rider to clinch a medal in the scratch when he came third in the 15-kilometre, 60-lap race. This follows Wong Kam-po's and Kwok Ho-ting's gold medals at the world event in 2007 and 2011, respectively.
But defending champion Lee - despite a powerful second lap - could only finish sixth in her race, which German Miriam Welte won.
Welte clinched her second gold medal in the Alcides Nieto Patino Velodrome with a time of 33.451 seconds. The powerful German sprinter also won the team sprint with partner Kristina Vogel on the opening day.
World record holder Anna Meares, of Australia, came second in 33.548, followed by Anastasiia Voinova, of Russia (33.789). Lee managed 33.983 despite clocking the second-fastest time in the last lap in 15.521 seconds, just behind champion Welte.
But a poor first lap saw her placed 11th out of 16, which meant Lee could not close the big gap.
"The result was a bit out of our expectations," said Cycling Association chairman Leung Hung-tak. "Lee has been in the top three in most of the time trial races and it's not too often to see her slip.
"But there are still the sprint and keirin races and we hope she can put the defeat behind her."
But he hailed Cheung for clinching Hong Kong's first medal in Cali. "He has been making big progress since the 2010 Asian Games and will be a major medal hope for us in the Incheon Asian Games this summer," said Leung.
"Cheung has great speed as he captured a silver medal in the scratch at the last World Cup leg in January. And I believe his achievement in Cali is going to boost his confidence against the world's best riders."
Cheung, 23, broke away from the peloton at the halfway mark, but Ivan Kovalev of Russia and Irishman Martyn Ervine caught up. After changing his bike, he attacked again with eight laps to go, but could not sustain his lead.