Hong Kong had a good opening day at the Buddh International Circuit as the road leg of the Hero Cycles Asian Cycling Championship began here on Wednesday.
The country’s biggest success came in the women’s junior individual time trial as Yao Pang claimed gold. The Hong Kong cyclist was a winner in three track events too.
In the only elite competition of the day, Mongolian Enkhjargal Tuvshinjargal won the women’s individual time trial with ease as she bettered second-placed Japan’s Minami Uwano’s timing by almost three seconds. This was Mongolia’s first-ever gold medal in the championship’s history.
India, however, had a disappointing day as none of its riders came close to the podium spots in all three events.
Y. Sunita Devi (women’s individual time trial), N. Geeturaj (women’s junior individual time trial) and Rohit (men’s junior individual time trial) finished 12th, ninth and eleventh in their respective competitions.
There was more surprise in store later in the day when three Indian cyclists, including women’s junior keirin silver medallist T. Manorama Devi, carried the medals tray for the felicitation ceremony.
When asked about this unusual move, Cycling Federation of India secretary Onkar Singh defended it by saying, “It was an innovative way to present medals. Carrying the medals for a better cyclist is a mark of honour for the Indian riders.”
He added that this gesture also promotes “good sportsman spirit.”
Meanwhile, the Asian Cycling Confederation is considering a proposal to hold separate continental events for road and track cycling in the future.
At the ACC congress here on Tuesday, two-three countries are said to have put forward this idea.
The results: Women: Individual time trial: 1. Enkhjargal Tuvshinjargal (Mgl) 39:27.303s; 2. Minami Uwano (Jpn) 39:30.090; 3. Wan Yiu Jamie Wong (Hkg) 39:42.824. Junior: Men: Individual time trial: 1. Dmitriy Rive (Kaz) 36:12.318; 2. Masaki Yamamoto (Jpn) 36:24.318; 3. Mahdi Ebadallahirafsanjani (Iri) 37:28.706.
Women: Individual time trial: 1. Yao Pang (Hkg) 19:54.693; 2. Yekaterina Yuraitis (Kaz) 20:36.061; 3. Razan Soboh (Jor) 20:40.630.