SEDAN CHAIR RACE

DLA Piper team wins charity sedan chair race

PUBLISHED : Monday, 29 October, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 29 October, 2012, 4:27pm

James Bond, Super Mario Bros characters, the Simpsons and even London's Big Ben put in an appearance at the annual sedan chair race on The Peak yesterday.

And passers-by probably thought Halloween had arrived early as a group of wizards, witches and six-pack ancient Greek warriors showed off their costumes at the fundraising event that started and ended at the Matilda International Hospital.

But the stars of the day were eight runners from the DLA Piper team - dressed as 007, Mr Bean, Queen Elizabeth, two British Olympic gold medallists and two Chinese gold medallists. They took the prize for best-decorated chair, which was decorated as London's iconic clock tower.

"We wanted to celebrate the spirit of the London Olympics and we believe this was how some Hongkongers celebrated the Games - supporting both the Great Britain and China teams," said team member Janice Record of her multinational crew.

"Sedan chair race turned costume party" Video by Hedy Bok

Mr Bean, the popular British comic figure, was a bit overwhelmed by all the attention he received. "A lot of people wanted to take photos with me. I was extremely busy," said Calum McKeen, who was sporting a red tie with blue spots and clutching a brown teddy bear.

The event, celebrating its 38th anniversary, attracted 44 teams from different professions and sectors. Teams ran the 2.1-kilometre course around Mount Kellett Road, starting and finishing at the hospital to compete for trophies for best time, costume, decorated chair, overall spirit, and most entertaining team.

Organised by the Sedan Chair Charities Fund, the first race was held in 1975 to promote the hospital and raise funds for charity. When the hospital opened in 1907, sedan chairs and rickshaws were the only ways to take people to and from The Peak Tram.

Over the past three decades, the fund has raised more than HK$61 million for charities. Beneficiaries over the years include the Children's Cancer Fund, Oxfam and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.