Asian Games: Hong Kong’s Jacqueline Siu cries tears of joy after dancing to dressage gold in Indonesia
Jacqueline Siu thanks the Hong Kong Jockey Club for its multimillion-dollar investment in the sport – and providing such a talented horse in Fuerst on Tour
Hong Kong finally landed its first gold medal of the 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia on Thursday when Jacqueline Siu Wing-ying and her partner, Jockey Club Fuerst on Tour, won the individual dressage.
Siu overtook Malaysia’s Mahamad Fatjil Qabil Ambak to claim gold and bring a sigh of relief to the 586-strong Hong Kong team, who have suffered some narrow misses in their search for gold, particularly in fencing.
The win represents Hong Kong’s first equestrian gold at an Asian Games, and a reward for years of perseverance from Siu.
Indonesia 2018 is the 35-year-old Siu’s fourth Games and her first Asiad medal after twice finishing just short of the podium in fourth.
“At the last Asian Games I came fourth individually so I just missed out on a medal and I cried all the way home on the plane,” Siu admitted, “and now I’ll be crying because I’m so happy.
“I was really hoping for any medal really – it would be a huge achievement at this competition. There’s so many fantastic horses and so many top riders – to be on the podium with Qabil from Malaysia. He’s won so many medals at the Asian Games in dressage and jumping, so I’m happy to be on the podium with such talent.
“Thanks to the Hong Kong Jockey Club for providing me with this horse to ride and train. If I didn’t have [the support], I wouldn’t be here to compete at this amazing competition.
“A big shout out to my team at home, my family, my parents. Everyone has been so supportive, helping me continue my dream, even when I had difficult moments.
“Today it has all paid off. I have proved them right.”
The Hong Kong equestrian team are funded by a multimillion-dollar investment from the Hong Kong Jockey Club, which secured 10 competition horses for the team to compete in the 2017 China National Games and these Asian Games.
UK-based Siu and her 13-year-old mount were first partnered together at the National Games in Tianjin, China, last September where they claimed a silver medal.
Siu said earlier this week that her relationship with the gelding had blossomed in the run-up to these Asian Games as a result of spending more time together.
And she hinted she was confident of a gold-medal showing, saying: “The horse loves performing to music. As soon as he hears the music he thinks he’s at the disco and enjoys it. Hopefully, we’ll dance away with it on Thursday.”
Hong Kong has won only two bronze medals at Asian Games equestrian events – in team eventing at the 2014 Incheon Games and in team jumping in Guangzhou in 2010.
Dressage is one of three disciplines in equestrianism, where horse and rider are expected to perform from memory a series of predetermined movements, as the highest expression of horse training, according to the International Equestrian Federation.