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R/C club revives Camel Trophy Expedition

Published: June 29, 2016
Camel Trophyjp
The Hong Kong RC Defender Club is bringing back a scaled version of the Camel Trophy, a 4x4 vehicle race held from 1980 to 2000. Gary Yuen Siu-cheung started the club in 2015 and has already held five races. Through the use of social media, the club has already gained popularity, amassing more than 7,000 likes on Facebook and tens of thousands of views per video on YouTube.
 
The original Camel Trophy had competitors driving thousands of miles through jungles and rivers across several days. While the event was initially co-sponsored by Jeep, Land Rover ultimately became co-sponsor and the race featured every four-wheel drive transport in their lineup, including the Defender, currently the most popular vehicle with the R/C club members.
 
Naturally, the club's R/C race is far more safe and subdued than the original. About two-dozen R/C Defenders are guided along a dirt trail up and down steep hills, while conquering obstacles such as rocks and mud. Yuen explained that members “like doing this for the realism,” and they do not try to win the race by modifying their R/C vehicles to give them an unrealistic advantage.
 
These R/C vehicles cost anywhere between $400 and $1,300 and can be customized to look nearly identical to an actual Land Rover Defender, complete with lights, suspension, chassis, license plates, bumpers and scale figures.
 
The club's popularity has created business opportunities for some. Jason Patrick Tsang, founder and director of AsiaTees Hobbies and co-sponsor of the R/C Defender events, sells complete R/C units, parts and accessories to club members. These products sell so well locally he was able to start selling internationally.
 
Search for "Hong Kong RC Defender Club" on YouTube to watch the vehicles in action and find the club on Facebook to find out about upcoming events.