Record-Breaking Number of 1,900 Runners Scale New Heights
In Support of Sports for Charity
HONG KONG, Dec. 4, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Hosted by Sun Hung Kai Properties Limited (SHKP), the sixth SHKP Vertical Run for Charity — Race to Hong Kong ICC, which has also been the grand finale of the Vertical World Circuit for the fifth consecutive year, took place on 3 December. The event was attended and officiated by guest-of-honour Chief Secretary for Administration of the HKSAR Government Mr. Matthew Cheung, and other officiating guests including Event Organizing Committee Co-chairman Mr. Edward Cheung, Executive Director and Deputy Managing Director of SHKP Mr. Mike Wong, Executive Directors of SHKP Mr. Adam Kwok and Mr. Christopher Kwok, Campaign Committee Chairman of The Community Chest of Hong Kong Dr. Simon Kwok and Chief Executive of The Hong Kong Council of Social Service Mr. Chua Hoi Wai.
Chief Secretary for Administration of the HKSAR Government Mr. Matthew Cheung, Event Organizing Committee Co-chairman Mr. Edward Cheung, Executive Director and Deputy Managing Director of SHKP Mr. Mike Wong, Executive Directors of SHKP Mr. Adam Kwok and Mr. Christopher Kwok, Campaign Committee Chairman of The Community Chest of Hong Kong Dr. Simon Kwok and Chief Executive of The Hong Kong Council of Social Service Mr. Chua Hoi Wai officiate at the event
Mr. Matthew Cheung, Chief Secretary for Administration of the HKSAR Government described in his speech the SHKP Vertical Run as a well established, perfect blend of sports and charity to raise funds for developing services for underprivileged children and young people. On behalf of the Government, he thanked SHKP for its commitment to contributing to society and promoting exercise for good. Reaffirming the Government’s concern for children’s welfare, Mr. Cheung said that the Government is conducting public engagement activities for the setting up of the Commission on Children. He hoped that the community would lend its support to the work of the Commission in the future.
Executive Director and Deputy Managing Director of SHKP Mr. Mike Wong said: "The response to SHKP Vertical Run for Charity has been increasingly overwhelming over the years, registering a record number of participants once again this year. This shows that the popularity of vertical running has been growing among the public. As in years past, all proceeds will go to The Community Chest of Hong Kong and The Hong Kong Council of Social Service for the benefits of underprivileged children and youth. By organizing international charity sport events, we attempt to encourage the public to adopt a healthy lifestyle while helping people in need and promoting our spirit of ‘sports for charity’." Programmes benefitting from the event include the SHKP Rainbow for KIDS, an initiative of The Hong Kong Council of Social Service designated to support children and youth who have encountered a family crisis; St. James’ Settlement’s ‘Grow Goal Glow’ Life Planning Creator and Heep Hong Society’s A Holistic Employment Support Scheme for High-functioning Adolescents and Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders subsidized through The Community Chest of Hong Kong.
Over 1,900 runners from 35 nations and regions across the world, of which 90% were local runners, participated in this year’s Race to Hong Kong ICC, representing a record-breaking number of participants. The male-to-female ratio was approximately 7:3 while the age of participants ranged from 10 to 74. This year’s event also saw runners with vision or hearing impairments, amputees and autistic runners. Serving and retired professional athletes enrolled in the race, a testament to the growing popularity of vertical running among the public.
27 International Elite Runners Brave Hong Kong’s Tallest Building
Suzy Walsham from Australia and Piotr Lobodzinski from Poland Take Home Champion
2017 Vertical World Circuit took place in skyscrapers at 10 distinct locations around the world, with its grand finale held at SHKP’s International Commerce Centre. Circuit runners were ranked with a points system, where the highest-ranking elite runners were crowned champions at the award presentation ceremony of Race to Hong Kong ICC.
The Circuit’s finale Race to Hong Kong ICC gathered runners from 16 nations and regions, totaling a lineup of 27 elite vertical runners racing for the championship title. The champion for the men’s category was eventually taken by Australian runner Mark Bourne who reached the finish line at Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck in 12 minutes 37 seconds. In the women’s category, Australian runner Suzy Walsham reached the finish line in 13 minutes 58 seconds to take home first place.
Suzy Walsham has simultaneously become the women’s champion in the Vertical World Circuit, reigning as the ultimately celebrated vertical runner along with men’s champion Piotr Lobodzinski.
Diverse Race Categories Pronounce ‘Sports for Charity’ Spirit
Apart from the Elite Race, Race to Hong Kong ICC consisted of categories such as Individual Races, Relay Races and the Fun Climbs. The Fun Climb category was divided into two sub-categories, which required participants to scale 82 and 21 floors respectively. Children aged 10 or above were admitted to take part in the Fun Climb 21, where they shared the fun of vertical running with their families.
Over 930 runners enrolled in the Individual Races, in which He Liang Liang took home the title of champion in the men’s category in 13 minutes 49 seconds, while Melissa Yeung was crowned champion in the women’s category with her record of 18 minutes 28 seconds. The two winners will be sponsored by SHKP to attend 2018 Vertical World Circuit with the aim of promoting the spirits of ‘sports for charity’ and helping the needy.
Another highlight of the race was the Student Relay, of which there were two sub-categories, namely Secondary and Tertiary Students Relay Races. 49 teams competed in the closely fought Secondary Students category, with Tin Ka Ping Secondary School eventually coming first in 13 minutes 6 seconds, while HKBU (Hong Kong Baptist University) took home the winning title of Tertiary Students category in 12 minutes 8 seconds.
The competition raged on in the Corporate Relay Race. Members of the workforce ditched their work attire to take on the role of vertical runners, scaling the heights of Hong Kong ICC. The category was eventually won by Sun Hung Kai Properties Limited Team A. Members of the SHKP management also took part in the Fun Climb to show their support to the event.
Game Booths Provide a Joyous Weekend for All
To create an even more immersive sporting experience on the race day, SHKP specifically prepared a number of activities at the race site. Apart from teaming up once again with Playright Children’s Play Association (Playright) to offer games for family enjoyment, SHKP provided indoor training cycling units Wattbikes at the event, enabling friends and families to accompany runners to experience the joy of exercise while spending a joyous Sunday together.
2017 Vertical World Circuit
2017 SHKP Vertical Run For Charity – Race to Hong Kong ICC
He Liang Liang
Sun Hung Kai Properties Limited Team A
Tin Ka Ping Secondary School
STS Elite 1
Cheung Sha Wan Catholic Secondary School
HKBU (Hong Kong Baptist University)
HKBU (Hong Kong Baptist University) Team B
FSTE Team 3
About SHKP Vertical Run for Charity — Race to Hong Kong ICC
SHKP first launched the vertical running race in 2012, aiming to raise awareness of a healthy lifestyle among the Hong Kong public, as well as promoting a charitable spirit. In 2013, this vertical running event became the grand finale of the Vertical World Circuit, escalating into a sporting event of international scale. From 2014 onwards, the SHKP Vertical Run for Charity expanded into two branches — Race to Hong Kong ICC held at the International Commerce Centre and Race to Shanghai IFC held at the SIFC in Shanghai. Both events actively encourage public participation in the sport while promoting charitable acts. Since 2012, the SHKP Vertical Run for Charity has attracted over 13,000 runners.
About 2017 Vertical World Circuit
The annual Vertical World Circuit was established by the International Skyrunning Federation (ISF). Each year, the ISF selects locations around the world and conducts vertical races at iconic skyscrapers. The Circuit is under the auspices of the ISF to ensure its adherence to international sporting standards.
The 10 races this year spanned the globe, including Dubai, London, Paris, New York, Manila, Sydney, Osaka, Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, with Hong Kong’s ICC being the Circuit’s final stop. For more details, please visit http://www.verticalworldcircuit.com/.
Photo – https://photos.prnasia.com/prnh/20171204/2006303-1