Hong Kong Fields First Dressage Team Ever At the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar
Wellington resident Lily Zilo and her mare Windsor's Mira are safely home in their Wellington stables after the long journey to Doha, Qatar, where the competed for Hong Kong on the Dressage Team at the Asian Games. Accompanying Zilo was her long time coach, Loxahatchee, Florida resident Linda Smith, and "Groom Extraordinaire Gabriel Meyer and John Achilla. Close friend Elizabeth Kane travelled to Qatar to cheer her on and sent this write up and photos.
Seven dressage teams and twenty-five individuals competed in the Asian Games in Doha, Qatar during the first week of December. Although spectator attendance was low by European standards, there was no lack of enthusiasm displayed by the mostly Middle Eastern audience as they cheered for each competitor under sunny skies in the Arabian Gulf. Korea defended their title as the gold medal team, Malaysia took home the silver, and the Japanese team won the bronze. Hong Kong placed fourth… a valiant effort for this inaugural team.
This was the first dressage team ever for Hong Kong, previously only having an individual rider. Lily Chiu Zilo of Wellington, Florida and her Dutch warmblood mare, Windsor’s Mira, made the long journey to Qatar to represent Hong Kong. The three-member team also included Jacqueline Wing Ying Siu, and Aram Harutune Gregory.
Lily Chiu Zilo and her mare traveled the longest distance to participate in the Games, which was Lily’s first CDI ever. “I appreciate the opportunity that I was given to represent Hong Kong and I am honored that the Hong Kong Equestrian Federation placed their trust in me and my mare, Mira.” states Lily. “From now on, I will participate in CDI competitions in the USA, riding for Hong Kong and I will continue to do my best to make Hong Kong proud. I have made so many new friends. This was an extraordinary journey and I will always cherish the memories.”
In addition to the Hong Kong riders, the following individuals were instrumental in the success of the team:
- Edwin McAuley, VP of the Hong Kong Equestrian Federation
- Soenke Lauterbach, Secretary, HKEF
- Nigel King, Chef d’equipe, HKEF
- Gordon Sidlow, DVM
- Michael Lee, Treasurer, HKEF