From east and west, young and old, competing or spectating, the Tuen Ng Festival dragon boat races on Tuesday will bring out a mass of humanity to enjoy a day of drumming, eating, drinking, and celebration. Hundreds of dragon boat teams will test themselves in stamina-sapping races to the finish line at many venues around the SAR. It's a day of reckoning for those teams that have been in training over the last few months. With their school just one minute from the beach, the Hong Kong Sea School team, one of the youngest in competition at the Stanley Championships on Tuesday, say they have an advantage over their older rivals. 'We've been training three times a week early in the morning before schools starts,' said the school's PE teacher Ringo Ma Wing-hong. 'The boys are determined to do well and even asked to have a fourth training session, but I told them no - they need their rest,' said Ma, whose team, comprising boys from Forms one to five, will compete in the Chinese A category at Stanley - the biggest event of the day in terms of participating boats. 'In the past we've done well. We won the Chinese trophy once. We introduced dragon boat racing as a school sport 15 years ago - it's great for building character and discipline,' he said. Prior to a race, teams will use various strategies to psyche themselves up. 'We usually do a 150m light warm-up paddle where we concentrate on technique. After that we'll do some muscle stretching, then we are ready to race,' said Ma. The Buzz team, competing in the expat category at Stanley, have a different way of preparing. 'We will have a focus session just before we get into the boat where we visualise what we have to do during the race from the start to the middle to the end,' says Kirk Perris, president of the team. 'I prepare some mini-speeches to psyche up the team and sometimes we have five seconds of silence. Other teams do something similar, like the Bondi Diggers. They put their arms around each other and kind of sway back and forth,' says Perris. Some teams choose to put their faith in the gods. 'I noticed some of the Chinese teams will have more traditional methods, like throwing paper money into the water for good luck, or touching the dragon's head. The really hardcore teams don't wear any shoes,' says Perris. Stanley is renowned for its social atmosphere, a famously multicultural affair as the expatriate teams mix it up with the Chinese. Up to 20,000 people will descend on the tiny bay. Elsewhere the races have an ultra competitive element. Tai Po hosts the race with the longest distance - an energy-sapping 700 metres. 'The Tai Po dragon boat races are the highest standard in all of Hong Kong,' said the event organiser Phillip Wong.