HK Magazine: How did you start sailing? Ting Chan: When I was studying at university, a friend of mine asked me to start sailing with her. I had no idea what it was but agreed to go along anyway. Initially, I thought that we would be steering a motorboat. When we finally got out on the water I was surprised that this motorless boat was able to move. It was love at first sight. I loved being so close to the water. I loved everything about it. HK: How often do you sail? TC: On average, I sail about two or three times a week. Each sailing session lasts two to three hours. Any longer than a couple of hours is pointless, as after a certain time you start to get tired and your physical condition worsens. The longest I have ever stayed on the water was in a race in Holland. I was out on the water for about seven hours—I was tired, cold and hungry. HK: What do you like most about sailing? TC: When I sail, I feel at one with nature. It makes me so happy when I can reach out and touch the water. I also love that it is environmentally friendly and that the more you sail, the more you notice your progress. HK: What would you like to say to people interested in sailing? TC: Make sure you can swim and that you are not afraid of the water! If you’re going to start, make sure it is sailing you want to do, not windsurfing! I know many who get confused between the two. I prefer sailing, as windsurfing requires a lot more strength. HK: What’s the most memorable experience you’ve had on the water? TC: The most memorable was when I got stuck near the airport runway out at Chek Lap Kok. I had police boats demanding that I move my boat. But as there was no wind, I was stuck! This made the police angry—they yelled out “You are now in a restricted area, you must move your boat immediately!” HK: How do you feel when you sail? TC: I do become very bored if there isn’t much wind. Like most sailors, I am better at sailing in heavier winds. Recently a group of men and I competed in the annual Around the Island Race, and the wind was like that of a Typhoon 3! We were all surprised that our yacht didn’t break—and more so that in such conditions, we were able to break the previous record by about 30 minutes. HK: Any plans to sail around the world? TC: I get incredibly seasick so I am in no rush to sail around the world. However, I would like to travel to some more places in Europe and sail there. I would like to sail in Austria, because I have heard from friends that it is a beautiful place. HK: Seasick! Does it get in the way? TC: It is bad when there is no wind and just waves. This is when I get seasick. It is something that I just deal with—I do not take any medication. Once I got seasick in a race. It was about two months ago, it was very windy and there were huge waves. After being out on the water for a bit I began to feel sick, so I lay down in the boat until I felt a little better. That day everyone felt ill. HK: What challenges do you face? TC: The toughest or most challenging thing I find as a sailor is my lack of experience. I sail with and against people who have grown up sailing. However, I only started when I was 24 or 25. I am 31 years old. This is something I, unfortunately, cannot change. HK: You want to qualify for the 2016 Olympics. Do you have hopes for gold? TC: I am lucky enough to have such a great support team—I have the Yacht Club who let me park my boat out at Middle Island, and I have a few coaches. This is incredibly useful as, from an outsider’s perspective, they are able to point out my weaknesses and help me improve. In addition to this, I am racing a lot. The fastest way to improve is to race as much as possible. As most races are held in Europe, we are planning on going there next year. I am hoping for gold, but I know that it is a very hard target. It is, however, a wish that I hope comes true. Check out photos and videos of Ting in action here.