Hong Kong’s Sonia Lo Sin-lam scoops timely regional gold in Abu Dhabi as Olympic preparations begin

Newly crowned Asian windsurfing champion plays down her victory saying the result will have little bearing on the forthcoming Olympic Games

PUBLISHED : Monday, 14 March, 2016, 3:05pm
UPDATED : Monday, 14 March, 2016, 3:05pm

Newly crowned Asian windsurfing champion Sonia Lo Sin-lam has played down her victory in the regional championships saying the result will have little bearing on the forthcoming Olympic Games.

It will definitely boost my confidence with the title coming just after I won Hong Kong representation for the Rio Games. But many of top windsurfers did not attend the event
Sonia Lo Sin-lam

Returning from Abu Dubai on Monday after snatching her first regional title, Lo said more hard work would be required if she wanted to achieve a similar result at the Rio Games this summer.

“It’s always great to win a regional regatta especially as this is my first Asian title,” said the 23-year-old. “It will definitely boost my confidence with the title coming just after I won Hong Kong representation for the Rio Games. But many of top windsurfers did not attend the event including those from the Mainland, so there is still a lot of hard work in my preparation building up to Rio.”

Lo pulled off a major surprise when she defeated compatriot Hayley Chan Hei-man in the internal selection for the Rio Olympics. The up-and-coming boardsailor made it to the medal race at last month’s RS:X World Championships and finished in eighth place overall while Chan, Hong Kong’s representative at the London Games four years ago, could only manage 12th place.

In the men’s event, Michael Cheng Chun-leung, who will represent Hong Kong in Rio, was not too disappointed with his silver medal from Abu Dubai.

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“I suffered two jump starts in the race as I wanted to try some new techniques but of course they didn’t work out,” said Cheng, who will also make his Olympic debut in Rio after beating teammate and London Games representative Leung Ho-tsun in the internal selection.

The two windsurfers will be leaving for Europe for two major races in the coming months – the Hyeres World Cup in France and the Delta Lloyd Regatta in the Netherlands – as part of their Olympic build-up before leaving for Rio in July with a month-long period of fine tuning before the Rio Games get underway.