Last night I accompanied Stuart, Gordon, Jack and Dan from the HK office to Happy Valley and had my first (ever) experience of spectating live horse racing at the Hong Kong Jockey Club. This was followed by some bar-hopping in Wan Chai (which I’ve recently discovered is the red light district of HK by the way). Big night. Far too big for a school night…
I shan’t reflect too much on the Wan Chai part, as I’m still suffering/recovering from it right now (apparently “Wan Chai can do that to you“), but I will talk a bit about the races, which I found to be a very cool experience!
The races are run on Wednesday nights and Sunday and being the first night of the season, the grounds were buzzing with foreigners and locals alike. Bands/entertainment perform in between the races, beer stands are scattered around the place and it’s pretty easy to get quite close to the live action and be trackside to see the horses cross the finish line! Also, at the HK Jockey Club, proceeds from the betting apparently go to charity – interesting fact (at least to me. but I know nothing about the industry in general).
But what I liked most was the scenery and atmosphere. Imagine walking in to this big, brightly illuminated track after work, music pumping (and people punting), coupled with the urban backdrop of the tall HK buildings that surround the racecourse. I’m sure my little spiel isn’t doing it justice, but if in HK, you must get down to Happy Valley and attend the races. Just think twice about going for those post-race drinks (particularly if you have work the next day). Wan Chai -1, Liann -0.