Best of the best: Hong Kong’s Cheung ready to step up to the ultimate test against world’s elite in Rio

He’s beaten the best in Asia, now he can’t wait to face the best in the world

PUBLISHED : Friday, 05 August, 2016, 5:27pm
UPDATED : Friday, 05 August, 2016, 11:08pm

Hong Kong’s Cheung King-lok knows he can beat Asia’s best cyclists – now he can’t wait to test himself against the world’s best in Rio.

Cheung will compete in the men’s road race, a brutally undulating 236km slog from the Copacabana and up and down the mountains of this most picturesque city.

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Peter Sagan, one of the most talented road racers around, winner of the points classification in the Tour de France the last five years in a row, decided he’d be better off doing the cross-country mountain bike race instead after looking at the course.

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Experts say it’s probably the hardest world championship or Olympic course in at least 20 years, but Cheung is undaunted as he looks to learn from the best and fulfil his dream of reaching the Tour de France.

“I want to gain the experience, which is invaluable,” said the 25-year-old, who won both the road race and time trial at this year’s Asian Championships.

“The athletes are from so many different countries and they are all top riders.

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“It’s not just a competition in Asia any more. It’s a world-class international competition.”

Cheung became only the second Hong Kong rider ever to win a major pro deal after signing for OricaGreenedge in March.