Magazine (Hong Kong Police) 警聲
( issue 706期 )4-17/7/2001
*The Hong Kong and Kowloon Town Crier Magazine (June 2001 issue) Cover Story
* 人民網 (新華社 圖片2001)
*Oriental Daily News (Chinese)東方日報報導2000/6/7
* SCMP - view archive of 2000/6/7 "Dragon rowers take a roasting"
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South China Morning Post 1997/6/10
Cheers and beers as dragon boat fever grips thousands
- STAFF REPORTERS
Competitors from the HK Sea School (front) arrive safely at Stanley shore after battling it out in the annual dragon boat races.
It was a day of sinking, swimming, distressed
damsels and men overboard at yesterday's
dragon boat races… but for spectators of this water-borne version of the Sevens, it was
time for cheers and beers.
Much like its rugby counterpart, the emphasis of the action was more on fun than winning,
with spectators and competitors alike wallowing in the revelry.
Thousands lined waterfronts across the territory to see more than 120 teams paddle and
pant, particularly in Stanley and Shan Tin…….
Boat fans' cheers put pipers on crest
While dragon boat teams paddled with determination elsewhere,
barmy behaviour and balmy
weather ruled in Stanley yesterday.
As always, on the fifth day of the fifth month of the lunar calendar, the expatriate
stronghold was awash with sea water lager.
But the event was bitter-sweet, with one long-standing ingredient present for the last
The crowd of about 700 people on Stanley Main Beach gave a rousing reception to the
Pipes and Drums of the Black Watch, who bade a fond farewell on behalf of the British
Forces, though they too joined in the party spirit.
The final withdrawal of the garrison meant the Royal Navy could not lend a boat
But the Black Watch provided musical accompaniment and, by the end of the afternoon,
a conga of happy, skimpily clad revellers had formed behind them.
Pipe Major Steven Small said: "We got an astounding reception to our performance.
There was hardly any room around us we were so packed in, but the reaction from the
crowd was fantastic.
I would say they all realised this was the last time we were going to be here."
Chief judge Mike Sinfield said organisers looked forward to the People's Liberation
Army - some members of which would be based nearby at Stanley Fort - getting involved
in the event.
He said: "I am sure the PLA will be invited to lend assistance next year. The Royal
Navy have given us tremendous help in the past."
The British Garrison was involved in the most spectacular finish in Stanley in 1976
when a Grenadier Guards crew crossed the finish line at top speed only to ram a sampan
amidships, slicing it in half.
Some 126 teams competed yesterday with the customary sinkings and disqualifications.
One team, aptly named "Sink And Swim", went down within metres of the starting line.
Others were cautioned for carrying too many rowers. But, as one T-shirt proclaimed,
the prevailing attitude among most competitors was, "Who Cares Who Wins?"
Horace Mak Tat-shing, team captain of the MVS Asia Dragon team, said: "We were pipped
at the post, but it's not about winning. It's about team spirit and not catching
cholera or typhoid from the water."
Afterwards, Mr Sinfield said: This was one of the smoothest and nicest events I have
been involved in. The atmosphere and sportsmanship was great with no hassles or
complaints about results."
photo: Dickson Lee
Marking their mark... members of the Hong Kong Institute of Architects team prepare for the fancy dress Dragon Boat race at Stanley beach yesterday.
South China Morning Post 1994/6/14
Extra race day floated after record turnout
By EMMA BATHA
Stanley dragon boat races may in future be held over two days
following a record
More than 10,000 spectators crowded onto the beach to watch 109 crews compete
for the Chinese Men's Cup, Expat Man's Cup and Ladies' Cup.
Organisers, who had to turn away at least 10 teams this year, say they will
discuss extending the races to a second day to cope with increasing demand
from would-be crews.
They are also worried about plans for a new sports complex on the beach that
could force them to move the races.
Lawrence Chan Yau-yue, organising committee chairman, said: "As far as I know
this is the largest race in the territory and we've had more crews this year
than ever before.
"But we still had to reject more than 10 teams because we couldn't fit them in.
"It's been suggested we hold the event over two days and we will be talking
about that after this race.
"We are also worried about plans to erect a water sports center here. These
beaches are already quite crowded so if it's a big development it could make
things more difficult for us.
"This is a beautiful venue and we don't want to go anywhere else."
More than 2,000 rowers participated yesterday, but for most, taking part was
more important than winning.
Winners of the loudest team award were the Hong Kong Institute of Architects
women's crew who psyched themselves up beforehand with much banging of cymbals,
tambourines and gongs and some raucous renditions of "We will, we will rock
you! Rock you!".
Captain Zena Teoh, 26, said: "This is the first time for the ladies, but we've
been practising very hard, even in thunder and lightning.
"We're well known in Tsim Sha Tsui as the loudest, most raucous team - if there
was a prize for the noisiest team we would get it."
But the guys with the loudest gear, or lack of it, were the boys from The Gym
who jogged onto the beach in orange shorts, dayglo green caps and a lot of
fluorescent body paint.
Manager of the Gym, in Central, Kenny Wong, 30, quipped: "It's war paint to
frighten off the competition and of course, coming from a gym, we have to show
off our bodies."
But not to be outdone on the personal grooming front was the Arups Women team,
which had elected Wilma Sherliker, 30, as lipstick monitor.
"It's shocking pink for shocking ladies, " Scots-woman Wilma explained as she
smeared lurid crimson over her sister rowers… and any male bystanders who got
in the way.