Completion of Jockey Club Sha Tin Rowing Centre Extension Project Marks New Beginning and Further Promotes Rowing for All
The Hong Kong, China Rowing Association (HKCRA) held an opening ceremony today (15 May) to celebrate the completion of the Jockey Club Sha Tin Rowing Centre (JCSTRC) Extension Project. An initiative to make rowing more visible and accessible in Hong Kong, while also promoting sports for all and encouraging the public to lead an active lifestyle, the Extension Project was generously funded by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust.
Opening this month, the new Centre will become the training base for the Hong Kong Rowing Team. It will also open to the public as a community hub for rowing, making good use of the expanded facilities to encourage a wide range of participation and host activities for all age groups and sectors of the society.
Officiating at the opening ceremony were President of the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China, Mr Timothy T. T. Fok, GBS, JP; Executive Manager, Charities (Sports and Culture) at The Hong Kong Jockey Club, Ms. Donna Tang; Acting Commissioner for Sports at the Culture, Sports and Tourism Bureau, Mr Paul Cheng Ching-wan; Olympians Ms Carmen Lee Ka-man and Mr Lok Kwan-wo; President of the Hong Kong, China Rowing Association, Mr Mike Tanner, BBS, MH; and Chairman of the Hong Kong, China Rowing Association, Mr Ng Kong-wan.
Construction of the JCSTRC Extension Project, designed in accordance with the principles of sustainability and social inclusion, started in 2021. New features include more than 200 BIPV solar panels installed to generate green energy and also provide financial resources to support rowing programmes for disadvantaged groups. Among its new facilities is an elevator to make the centre fully accessible. There is also a renovated rowing-specific gym, ergometer training room, competition management room and upgraded changing rooms, which together provide a first-rate environment and user experience for athletes and other Centre users. Training rooms for coaches and umpires are also features of the extended Centre, and will provide strong future technical support for the Association’s activities.
Usable area at the Centre has been increased from approximately 1500 sq. m to over 3000 sq. m. It will become an integrated community hub for rowing-related programmes and activities, including corporate team building, volunteering and community outreach events, all of which can help to build a more inclusive and active community.
President of the HKCRA, Mr Mike Tanner, BBS, MH thanked The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust for its strong support and added: “The Extension Project, construction of which has taken nearly two years to complete, has produced this modern and functional Sports Centre as the Home of Rowing in Hong Kong. In addition to the extensive rowing facilities, the Centre is the headquarters of the Association. The design has focussed on functionality, to provide those elements needed by the Association to support the growing number of programmes demanded by our ambitious plans for the further development and promotion of rowing.”
“Training venues and supporting facilities are crucial for the success of athletes. In view of this, the Jockey Club has supported the expansion of the Jockey Club Sha Tin Rowing Centre to provide Hong Kong rowers with more advanced training facilities, and at the same time encourage more citizens to participate in a rowing and sports, fostering a healthy lifestyle,” said Executive Manager, Charities (Sports and Culture) at The Hong Kong Jockey Club, Ms Donna Tang. “The Club’s support for this Centre, like all of its charity donations, is made possible by its unique integrated business model through which racing and wagering generate tax and charity support for the community.”
President of the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China, Mr Timothy T. T. Fok, GBS, JP said he looks forward to seeing the JCSTRC fully utilised. “Sport is what makes Hong Kong a special community, the opening of the new centre will definitely benefit Hong Kong athletes and I can’t wait for their great performance in the upcoming Hangzhou Asian Games.”
After the ceremony, a group of Hong Kong Team junior squad members demonstrated the fun, challenge and excitement of the ergometer and rowing, calling on the public to try rowing at the JCSTRC themselves.
Hong Kong Rowing Team Olympian Carmen Lee Ka-man expressed her excitement at the development of rowing in the city. “An easily accessible and well-equipped venue is of crucial importance to the day-to-day training of athletes,” she said. “Thanks to the generous support and funding from The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, I’m sure it will not be long before we have more home-grown world-class athletes. I can’t wait to witness the rising stars competing for glory at an international level!”