Birthday messages from the alumni 1993-2013…

Derek Sands (1997-2003)

My paddling life at HKIPC included: Editor 1999-2000, Webmaster 2000-2001 and then Chairman 2002 – 2003

My favourite memories of which there are soooo many Winning the Chai Wan 50 man boat championship.

Winning Zhaoqing paddling at point with Matt Brady Capsizing at Singapore Internationals in the small boats Capsizing at Mui Wo the 20 man boat with Des steering

The friends, The after race parties, The lactic acid, The Nancies, The hard work, Being the best that we could be

John Boss (aka Hugo) (1993 – 1998)

What can I say?

Would absolutely love to be there but ……

Amazing things those one piece paddling suites. I don’t think I would try it on now.  My 12 year old daughter might not understand!

Have a brilliant evening, and best wishes to all current and past members of one of the most amazing clubs of which I have ever had the privilege of being a member.


Judy Slater (1995-97)

Thank you for your invitation. I am in London still so unfortunately am not available to attend the HKIPC 20th function.

These were very happy times and I am still in touch with a number of paddlers. Clare Lissaman lives almost in the next street to me and is involved in paddling in London, although I have not seen her in a while. I still see Helen Corker from time to time.

I hope you have a great evening and please give my love to anyone that I would have known then – Dan, Agnes, Wendy, Des etc.

David Roberts (1995 – 1997)


Sadly I will not be able to make it.

There is however a plan hatching to come over a month later for the Clockenflap Festival…

Coincidently, just yesterday I came across the pic that was in the paper that day of me “skurfing” behind the boat. Aaah, what memories…

Malcolm Kendall

I would love to join you but if I started paddling now I still would not be there in time!

Enjoy and know that we will be celebrating with you here in Vancouver.

Will be there in spirit!

James Kung

Have a good one everyone!

Winnie Bridge (formerly Yee)

Congratulations VRC on 20 years of paddling.

I was fortunate enough to be part of HKIPC for several years starting in ’95.  I was dragged along as a curious girlfriend, put at the back of the boat, and told to try and keep up with those in front of me. I somehow survived the session  — Dan must’ve been sick that day — and returned to slowly work my way to the front of the boat.  IPC provided experiences and friendships that have really shaped my wonderful years in HK. I even met my husband through a paddling connection.  Although I’ve retired from paddling, I have many fond memories (and chronic shoulder/neck pain) to remind me of those special purple haze years.

Winnie Bridge (formerly Yee)

A few life lessons gleaned along the way:

  • From Dan: “If you’re able to talk–or make any sound–you’re not working hard enough.”
  • One piece race suits are NOT suitable bar attire. (reference Tim Fang, John Boss, Steve Palmier at Malaysian / Indonesian races?)
  • You should always go to the source for the real experience. eg, Dragon boating in China; Outrigging in Hawaii
  • Nothing is as easy as it looks. (Steering a straight line!!! — especially in a race!)
  • There really are crazy people out there.  Don’t try to keep up with them.  (Martha’s schedule: ‘I will have dragon boat practice this morning, then outrigging for 5 hours, finishing just in time to start the Trailwalker race.  Want to meet me after to hop one legged around the world?”
  • After a hard day’s work, there’s nothing more restorative than being on the water, with only the sound of synchronized paddles and swirls of phosphorescence illuminating the darkness.

Teena Goodman

Can’t believe it’s been 20 years since the beginning! I have such fond memories of dragon boat and outrigger in such terrible cold and stormy weather and Dan still pushing us all to do it right. Caroline Jenner (Caz) and Claire Goodchild got me into it all and I have innumerable great friends from paddling thanks to where it all started for me… IPC.

I couldn’t name all the folks who helped me become a better paddler there are too many.   So many  lasting friendships. Congrats to IPC and Aloha to all who celebrate.

James Irwin

This would appear to be the season for dragon boating echoes from the past.
First 007 stuff and now this!

Heather and Peter Doyle

Wish I could hop on a plane and see everyone and go for a paddle!

Have fun celebrating!

Paul and Liz Hooper (1996-99)

Good to hear from you.  Even though it will be half  term we will not be able to get to Hong Kong.  Hope you have a great night and remember us to any old timers who may remember us.

One of the highlights of my time with HKIPC was the World Champs in 1997.  I also remember my first real adventure in an OC6 in the stormy seas off Guam.  I think I only tried two strokes in the whole long distance race as I tried to steer a reasonable course and not capsize.  Another highlight was the Stanley final in 1999 when the IPC mixed B beat the A team but were narrowly beaten by the Diggers all men’s crew by the judges call.

Hope you have a great night.

Isabel Guillou

The picture was during the “3 peaks” race.  I was part of the safety team gathered by Des. I was standing at Shek O peak, waiting for those crazy purple paddlers to run 500m after hours of paddling. Some were in really bad shape when reaching the peak! But pushing themselves: brain and body, to the limit was/is part of being a purple paddler. Sometimes I remember feeling blood in my mouth.  I was pushing that hard because I knew everyone was pushing that hard as well.

My best memory I think was the race we did with Des during HK International. The year he and Wendy left the club. We finished so far in front of everyone else. We pushed ourselves (girls power!) to the limit that day, physically and emotionally. Ah Fat was steering, Des was shouting in front. Great speech, great paddle. That was the magic of HKIPC and I hope it goes on …

Duncan McNally (2007 – 2012)

I have many happy memories of IPC – training, training, training. But it’s the people that make it fun.

Here’s to 20 more years!

Jet Tagasa Benson

I remember putting away the old wooden boats during those cold winter nights really traumatized me ;-).   OK, only  joking.  But really, I maybe a Dubai Digger now but I will always forever be an IPC’er at heart!

Christine Kwan

Congratulate the VRC Paddle Club (HK IPC) on reaching 20 years and wishing the Club all the best and continued success for the next 20+ years. Keep winning those medals!

Mei Tuicolo

Dragon boat season 2009 with Clare Anderson as our Captain. The year I stuck the post-it note to my monitor at work & stuck it to my wallet 2:03 – the time in which Macau was won in 2008 by Nam Hoi. Even though I’m an outrigger paddler, there was something about that season, which was great. We won HK Internationals and qualified as the only club crew in an all-national rep crews final at Macau. That was pretty awesome. We got close to 2:03, didn’t we?

It was also the Buddha Bar Party after Lamma. The year everyone cried because we won the Lamma 500 by a whisker, after losing it to Stormies the year before. We also won Deep Water Bay.

That was the year we also went to WuXi, Em & I arrived later that the rest of the squad and got chauffeur to the door whilst the rest of you poor mugs got stuck on the booze bus with a flat tyre. Funny in hindsight.

It was also the first proper season, in its entirety, in which I paddled with girls who are, to this day, still some of my best friends. I miss them all a lot.

Yeah, it was good.  For me, paddling in HKIPC was just as much about outrigger canoe paddling as it was about dragon boating. Especially the latter. Racing in the fisherman races; you will never be able to recreate that anywhere else in the world. It’s special & a privilege, as an IPC paddler, to be invited to such races.

Sharon Tudela (2001 – 2007)

IPC became my family in Hong Kong.

My favourite / most memorable race was the 4 peaks in January 2007 (running up Ma On Shan with Jo Jones) while pregnant with Isabel (but finding out only a few weeks later) .

This was Derek’s favourite race for me as well !

Gerry Redmond

Congratulations to HKIPC – Thanks for all the memories, the friends and the challenges – all the very best for the next 20 years.

Special thanks to Dan, Des, Mark, Andy, Wendy,  Jo, Catherine, Martha, Winnie and Mr Steele for the endless hours of giving.

Classic moments: Capetown Club World Championship – long course racing the Dutch and the Russian team, teaching the Ozzie Navy the meaning of respect in Fuzhou, 50 man races in Chai Wan, Queen Lilio  – we got a medal !,  the village pollards, the ridiculously fast Indonesian teams,  thinking up names for the Mussy products range and The CHUGG!

Stupid saying: I gave my skin for this piece of tin

Katherine Lynch

Please pass on my best congratulations to the Club and to the current and past paddlers that are celebrating with all of you tonight! Twenty years is a big achievement and one of which the Club should be very proud.

The VRC has been and remains a big part of why I enjoy living in Hong Kong and I am happy that I could contribute in some very small way to the development of dragonboat and outrigger paddling within the Club. It is really great to be able paddle with current VRC friends & paddlers and to meet up with VRC alumni both here (Hi Dan & Agnes) and in Australia (Hello Des & Wendy!) I hope you guys have a really fun party and host another one in 10 years time that I can join in on! All the very best, Katherine & Marcus

Charlene Mo

I joined IPC soon after moving to Hong Kong and it quickly became a second home for my sister Michelle and I.

I’ve had some of the best paddling experiences in my life with the club and made lifelong friends and lasting memories.

Congratulations on the club’s 20th anniversary!!”

Mark Sheffield

I can’t believe its 20 years. That means I was at the VRC paddling 10 years ago.  OMG it makes me feel old! Great memories though.

Charles and Polly (nee Fox) Roberts

Met on the #260 bus to Deep Water Bay dragon boat practice, married a couple of years later and now with 3 children which means, unfortunately, no time to paddle.

Thank you HKIPC!