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Bankers in Hong Kong run from sunset to sunrise at Barclays MoonTrekker 2015
Barclays Moontrekker, now in its seventh year, is Hong Kong’s leading annual night hiking and running fundraising event. Participants either completed the Moonlit 30km or the Sunrise 43km, reports FinBuzz.
The race was held in Mui Wo (on Lantau Island) and finished at Pui O Beach. Runners in the 43km race began at the race after the sun had set and ran through the hills of Hong Kong, including Lantau Peak, which has a peak of 934 meters, with the goal to cross the finish-line before sunrise. The Sunrise 43km began at 8:45 pm and the Moonlit 30km started at 11:20 pm. Results are available here.
Participants entered as a solo, pair, team of four or corporate team of four and are required to raise a minimum sponsorship amount of HK$650.
Employees from Barclays dominated the event with 300 out of the total 1500 participants hailing from the bank. The number of participants is limited to 1500 for safety reasons.
William Sargent, Founder and Event Director of Moontrekker, saw a growing demand for competitive events back in 2009, “but rarely did those events focus on the experience. I wanted to create something slightly different, fun and challenging,” he explained.
Sargent, a long-time night hiker, launched Moontrekker as a side project. It was completely booked within six weeks and seven years later that demand has only increased.
About 90 percent of participants work for multinational companies and more than two-thirds work in finance or professional services, Sargent says. “There are very competitive types in the finance field, anything related to health and the outdoors they do well. You would think that if they did it one year, then that’s enough, but it gets even more competitive within departments, year to year,” he added.
“The experience of hiking in the night is far more exhilarating and intense than during the day, as it’s mostly pitch black, quiet, and you only have a stream of light to follow. The party at the finish line is epic, and it’s always fun to see what crazy outfit wins best dressed,” said a trekker, who wished to remain anonymous. “Even though it’s competitive between certain banks, in particular, there’s still a great vibe. The training is very harsh, though, if you aren’t that fit and not for the faint of heart.”
Over the past six years, Moontrekker has raised HK$7,500,000 for charities including Room to Read, which supports literacy.
The Nature Conservancy (a global conservation organisation working to protect ecologically important lands, waters for nature and people) was nominated this year, as participants wanted a charity based in Hong Kong (rather than seeing donations go elsewhere) that was inline with the event’s ethos.
This story (with pictures) first appeared in FinBuzz.
Photo: Edwin Lee