Grade 4 student, Hayden, recently represented Macau in the 5-day Optimist sailing race which took place in Hong Kong last week (Feb 13-17). It was an intense race, especially as it was in unchartered waters for the young sailor and the conditions were challenging with strong gusts on Sunday. Hayden competed with 98 other sailors, aged between 9 and 15, from all around the world aged 9-15. He ranked 86 out of the 98 sailors and placed third in his group, Aged 10 and under.
Hong Kong Race Week is a constituent event of the Asian Sailing Federation (ASAF) Youth Cup and is co-organised by the Hong Kong Sailing Federation and Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club. The event was based out of the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s Middle Island facility, and the racing took place across four race courses in the areas of Middle Island, Repulse Bay, Deep Water Bay, Stanley, Tai Tam and Beaufort.
We posed a few questions to the young sailor to find out more about his sailing career so far.
Q. Why did you choose this sport instead of other sports?
A. Two years ago, I was introduced to sailing during a summer camp organised by the Macau Government. It was amazing to sail a boat by myself, on the sea.
Q. How long have you been sailing
A. After the try-outs from the summer course, I was looking forward to regular training. I was later chosen to join the Macau team.
Q. Do you think this sport is useful in your daily life?
A. Sailing requires understanding techniques and being able to read changes from nature. These skills need to be grown from my practice and experience.
Q. How do you prepare for your competitions?
A. Practice, practice and practice. It is important to stay and eat healthy before a race.
Q. What was your most memorable moment of the race?
A. From the race, I built up friendships with sailors from different countries. We competed and learnt from each other. Haha…. sun protection is really important because I got chapped lips and sunburnt!