Team Executives

Last season was certainly beyond our dreams and expectations and that is testament to the hours of dedication that all our coaches and captains put in, but also to how each and every one of us in the club applied ourselves and took on-board each lesson from practice through to race day.

Come January, it will be great to welcome all our returning paddlers, but also to meet our 2017 rookie recruits, who I have no doubt will flourish under the guidance of our veteran paddlers and coaching team.

How we bond on the boat as well as off can only serve us well for this our 17th season and also help to further strengthen the bonds we have between the club and the wider paddling community. So let’s bring everything to every session, work hard, and then work harder. I know we will be in for another fantastic season!

Nick Ball, President 2015, 2016, 2017 Buzz Dragonboating Society

Now, here is your chance to get to know the Executive Committee of Buzz Dragonboating Society 2017.

 
Coach – Henry (Hong Kong)

When did you start paddling? What (or who) inspired you?
I started in 2001, inspired and encouraged by the local fisherman culture.

What’s your favorite memory from dragon boating?
In 2013, I was very proud to successfully commission a new wooden dragon boat for Buzz. This means we’re able to continue racing in the fisherman circuit, one of very few non-fisherman teams to do so.

What’s the hardest aspect about paddling, for either seasoned paddlers or new starters?
Training the mind to control the body.

What’s your secret weapon when it comes to paddling nutrition, especially on race days?
Filet-o-fish.

 
President – Nick (England)

When did you start paddling? What (or who) inspired you?
I started 2 years ago. I’d lost interest in football and wanted something different, my mum and sister had done it before. After one session with Buzz, I haven’t looked back.

What’s your favorite element of dragon boating?
One, the technical aspect of learning to paddle and two, the team aspect you get through spending a lot of time with everyone.

What’s the hardest aspect about paddling, for seasoned paddlers and/or new starters?
Perhaps the hardest aspect for seasoned paddlers is refining different parts of the stroke. For new starters, I think the amount of new things to think about can be a daunting challenge – just focus on one aspect at a time. Breathing was always my toughest one.

What’s your secret weapon when it comes to paddling nutrition, especially on race days?
When i grow up I want to be special!

The one thing I never paddle without is… drinking Lucozade sport!

 
Ladies Captain – Chris (USA)

When did you start paddling? What (or who) inspired you?
I started paddling with Buzz in 2002. Buzz has been my only team. I originally started paddling after watching the Stanley races in 2001. I remember thinking it looked fun, but it would be more fun to be in the boat than just watching boats. I had a friend who was paddling with Buzz and thought I would try it out. Never looked back.

What’s your favorite memory from dragon boating?
Winning the triple crown in the fisherman circuit for the mixed division in 2016. Not because we were the first mixed crew to do it, but more so was watching my fellow teammates pushing themselves at practice during the weeks in-between races. We knew we had the chance to do something special and everyone worked together to make it happen.

What’s the hardest aspect about paddling, for either seasoned paddlers or new starters?
Mental focus. The body can learn the motion quickly but training the mind to not wander off during races is the hardest part. Races are won or lost by hundredths of a second. That one one stroke you drifted away could be the difference.

What’s your secret weapon when it comes to paddling nutrition, especially on race days?
I eat the same things for every race. Small frequent meals almost on the hour. High carbs and sugars on race day for me. Protein in controlled amounts. Nothing that is going to make me feel bloated at any time. Also, I never drink alcohol on days leading up to a race. I can wait to drink the beer out of a trophy. Tastes better.

 
Mens Captain –Brian (USA)

When did you start paddling? What (or who) inspired you?
I started paddling in ’11 with my company team. After a couple years I was hooked but wanted more and Buzz was a great fit!

What’s your favorite element of dragon boating?
Team. Most sports have superstars which are one step ahead of their teammates. Dragon boating requires everyone in the boat to be physically and mentally attuned to each other. This also fosters great friendships outside of the boat.

What’s the hardest aspect about paddling, for seasoned paddlers and/or new starters? What do you find tough to do when you’re on the boat?
Timing! I have a difficult time clapping on beat so timing is something that I always have to concentrate on as it is a critical element of dragon boating.

What’s your secret weapon when it comes to paddling nutrition, especially on race days?
Spinach from a can. I go by Popeye the sailor man.

 
Ladies Social – Nora (Canada/Hong Kong)

When did you start paddling? What (or who) inspired you?
I started paddling in 2014. I wanted a new team sport to improve my fitness instead of going to the gym alone. Luckily, Buzz was recruiting paddlers on Meetup and I went to try out dragon boat for the first time. I would have to say, it was one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life! 🙂

What’s your favorite element of dragon boating?
The team will always be there to cheer you on and encourage you at the finish line no matter what place you come in. Also, the great friendship we form not only in the boat, but outside the boat!

What’s the hardest aspect about paddling, for seasoned paddlers and/or new starters?
The hardest aspect about paddling would definitely be the amount of time and commitment put into trainings each week. The early mornings, long bus ride after work, rain, and cold wind in January and February will definitely make you think twice if you want to go to practice three times a week. I’ve paddled for three years with Buzz, and I have never regretted going to those practices even if the weather is terrible or when I am not in shape on a Sunday morning, because I know the hard work will paid off on race days! Plus, dragon boat is a water sport, so rain is definitely not an excuse. 😛

What’s your secret weapon when it comes to paddling nutrition, especially on race days?
Get enough sleep, drink lots of water, and don’t intoxicate yourself the night before race days.

 
Mens Club Secretary – Sam (Canada)

When did you start paddling? What (or who) inspired you?
I’ve been paddling for two years now. My relatives would take me to watch the races on Tuen Ng Festival day when I came back to visit them as a kid. Back then I thought it was such as amazing sight to see 20 individuals paddling in sync and at such an amazing pace. When I came back to HK for good, I really wanted to try the sport as it was a nice complement the other sports that I played. Luckily, I met Nora who recruited me to the team.

What’s your favourite part of dragon boating?
When we won at Po Toi last year, which was first of three Gold Cup Mixed trophies Buzz won at the 2016 fishermen races.

What’s the hardest aspect about paddling, for seasoned paddlers and/or new starters?
To realize and prepare for the fact that the season is really long and can wear done even the most initially enthusiastic paddler from both mental and physical perspectives. It takes a lot of desire, dedication and perseverance but with the support and encouragement of teammates, we all make it happen. What has really helped these two past seasons was also remembering to find time to work out so that I was not as physically fatigued during water training and then I could maintain my focus on technique.

What’s your secret weapon when it comes to paddling nutrition, especially on race days?
Dried cranberries and mini bbq pork buns.

 
Treasurer – Catalina (Hong Kong)

When did you start paddling? What (or who) inspired you?
In 2001 I started paddling with my then employer HSBC, on their corporate team. Then, I saw an advertisement for Buzz, thought it could be fun and went along to find out about this traditional sport. And I’m still here!

What’s your favorite element of dragon boating?
Being part of a supportive and encouraging team, and it’s a reminder to keeping up my physical fitness

What’s the hardest aspect about paddling, for seasoned paddlers and/or new starters? What do you find tough to do when you’re on the boat?
For seasoned paddlers, be humble and open to fine-tune your technique, identify weaknesses and fix them! For new starters the commitment is a lot, but be persistent and have a strong mind-set

What’s your secret weapon when it comes to paddling nutrition, especially on race days?
Complex carbohydrates like multi-grain bread, sweet potato, or bananas.

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