HK$3.52 Million Awarded to the Summer Universiade & the National Games HK Medallists through Jockey Club Athlete Incentive Awards Scheme
The Hong Kong Sports Institute (HKSI) hosted the Jockey Club Athlete Incentive Awards Scheme (the Scheme) Presentation Ceremony today to present cash awards totalling HK$3.52 million to 22 Hong Kong medallists at the 29th Summer Universiade (also known as the World University Games, WUG) and the 13th National Games (NG).
The Scheme is supported by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust to recognise the sporting achievements of Hong Kong athletes at Major Games. At the WUG, four athletes won 2 gold and 2 bronze medals, making them eligible for a total of HK$1.3 million in cash awards. A further HK$2.22 million was given to the 18 athletes who wrapped up the NG with a historic count of 2 gold, 7 silver and 7 bronze medals, more than double the number of medals won at the last NG.
Officiating guests at the ceremony included Mr Lau Kong-wah JP, Secretary for Home Affairs; Mr Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges GBS JP, Chief Executive Officer of The Hong Kong Jockey Club and Dr Lam Tai-fai SBS JP, Chairman of the HKSI.
Dr Lam commended Hong Kong athletes for their skill, courage and strength. He said, “with the generous support from different parties, the HKSI is committed to ensuring that elite athletes have access to a high-performance environment that allows them to achieve their full potential. We collaborate with our many partners so that young athletes will be able to pursue their sporting dreams.” Dr Lam thanked the HKSAR Government; the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China; The University Sports Federation of Hong Kong, China; National Sports Associations and The Hong Kong Jockey Club for their ardent support.
Mr Engelbrecht-Bresges noted that sport was one of four strategic focus areas of the Club’s Charities Trust donations. "We believe it is important to support our best athletes as they strive for excellence, but most especially because their effort and achievement can inspire the community - creating pride and bringing people together,” he observed, “Above all, these positive values can motivate the community to become more physically active.”
The cycling team won the most number of medals for Hong Kong at the NG including 2 gold, 3 silver and 2 bronze medals. Leung Chun-wing came 2nd in men’s madison with his teammate Ko Siu-wai and 1st in men's omnium. He admitted that he became more mature than last Games and said, “Apart from winning medals, I also learnt to cope with my emotions under great pressure throughout the competitions. Siu-wai and I trained together for many years and finally we can bring success for Hong Kong!” Cheung King-lok, another medal winner, won a silver in men's individual time trial. “I was stuck in a bottleneck for a while but I tried my best to overcome it. I would train harder and would never give up. I hope this medal can drive me to reach new heights.”
Fencer Nicholas Edward Choi was the bronze medallist in men’s foil at the last NG, and this year he made a step forward to win an individual silver and a team bronze for Hong Kong. Choi said, “I did not have any medal target set for the Games as I only wanted to be in my best form. Luckily, I performed better than I normally do and reached the final. However, I feel much happier winning a bronze medal in the team foil because our team work finally paid off. Four of us have been training together for a few years and we are like brothers. Being able to win together is double happiness.” The other achievement of the fencing team came from Fong Hoi-sun, who joined the foil team to write a new page of history for the fencing squad by winning a bronze.
Wushu athlete Mok Uen-ying claimed a bronze medal in women's taolu taijiquan / taijijian event on her debut at the WUG. She said,” It was not easy. I got a fever two weeks before the Games which seriously affected my training. I thank the HKSI psychologist for his professional advice during such a difficult time. During the competition I once lost my strength but my determination held me on. This was the first time wushu being chosen as one of the WUG sports and was my last WUG as well, so the medal meant a lot to me.”
Established by the HKSI in 1994, the Athlete Incentive Awards Scheme provides cash incentives to local medal winners at various Major Games, with an aim to show recognition and appreciation to their hard work and dedication. The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust title sponsors the Scheme by providing cash awards to Hong Kong athletes who achieve outstanding performances at six Games including the Olympic Games, the Paralympic Games, the Asian Games, the Asian Para Games, the National Games and the World University Games.