Don’t call me Hong Kong’s Carl Lewis, says Chan Ming-tai after 100 metres and long jump wins

The talented long jumper shows his versatility by beating Hong Kong’s best sprinters with a personal best time of 10.47 seconds at Athletic Series Three

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 14 April, 2018, 9:54pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 15 April, 2018, 9:25am

Rising star Chan Ming-tai might be one of city’s hottest prospects with victory in both the 100 metres men’s sprint and the long jump on Saturday but don’t compare him with Olympic legend Carl Lewis.

Running his first 100 metres of the year at the Athletics Series Three, Chan, who is also Hong Kong’s long jump record holder, defeated an elite field of local sprinters in the men’s 100 metres final with a personal best 10.47 seconds, the fastest time recorded this year. Ng Ka-fung came second in 10.48 while Hong Kong record holder Tsui Chi-ho was third in 10.61 at Wan Chai Sports Ground.

After dashing to victory, the 2016 Rio Olympian took to the long jump pit, which started 45 minutes later, and Chan made no mistake with his leap to rank top of the standings with 7.27 metres, although the mark was far behind his 8.12-metre Hong Kong record set two years ago.

Chan was pleased with his double victory which drew slight comparisons with the American athletics legend, who won nine Olympic gold medals and was a brilliant sprinter/long jumper.

“The American [Lewis] is a world-class hero so don’t even compare me with him,” said Hong Kong’s newest track star. “Of course I am happy to win the sprinting event with a personal best but because the sprint was close to the long jump, my jump was somewhat affected. It’s not easy to do both events within 45 minutes of each other. It requires rhythm and speed and my legs were sore during the long jump.

“I will not take part in any more 100 metre races this year. Just once a year is good enough. I need to focus on the long jump, which will be my primarily target for the Asian Games this summer.”

Chan previously ran 10.48 seconds on his way to victory in the Hong Kong Inter-University Games last year and his impressive 100 metres result may now him earn him a place in the 4x100 metres relay team for the Asiad. A training squad for the Indonesia Games will be formed after next month’s Hong Kong Championships.

“I won’t think about the relay at the moment,” he said. “There will be a lot of considerations such as the training schedules for both events and the actual competition time in Indonesia. Let’s see.”

To sharpen his skills in Indonesia, Chan will train with the China national squad next week as the mainlanders, headed by their American coach Randy Huntington, will come down to Shenzhen for a training camp.

“They are the best in Asia and are on the world level,” said Chan, who also went to Beijing early this year to train with them. “There will be a lot to learn from them as I am building up for the Asian Games.”

Chan missed a medal at the Incheon Games four years ago when he cleared 7.73 metres for fifth place in a then Hong Kong record.

In the women’s 100 metres, youngster Chan Pui-kei finished first in 12.05 seconds. The 18 year-old is aiming to qualify for the World U20 Championships in Finland in July.