Hospitable as they are, Boholanos defended their turf and gave only three of the six championship slots to visiting paddlers in the recently concluded Sandugo Dragon Boat Festival held at the seas, between Dauis and Tagbilaran City Strait, July 20.
Local paddlers showed true grit, strength, endurance and teamwork to leave visiting dragon boat teams, some of them fresh from international competitions, in their wakes after 300 meters of synchronized frenzied paddling.
Amid resounding beats provided by a drum corps stationed at the Miramar Promenade where teams put up their team tents for paddlers to recover, Bohol paddlers of Dumalu-an Beach Resort Pirates A, Dauis Wild Dragons, Bohol Paddlers Association and Pundok Amila built a solid defense but yet allowed visitors to come home claiming also three championship trophies.
In the end, Dumalu-an Beach Resort Pirates A paddled in furious cadence to nail the championship slot for the Small Boat Open Category Small Boat, and another championship trophy for Small Boat Mixed category.
On the other hand, Philippine Accessible Disability Services (PADS) Adaptive Dragon Boat Racing Team of Cebu City, a team which recently bagged an international championship in Hongkong claimed the championship trophy for the Small Boat Women’s Category, and Small Boat Open Masters Category.
Winning for the locals however, was not an easy feat, as it would mean beating an internationally competing team of persons with disability who just wowed the entire dragon boating world with their Hongkong victory.
But, knowing the currents and the waters of Tagbilaran Strait neing their playground, Dauis Wild Dragons breathed fire in their after-burners to grab the Standard longboat Mixed Category, keeping the veterans of the PADS Adaptive Dragon Boat Racing Team, nearly half a boat length in the finish line buoys.
Meanwhile, Sugbo Mighty Dragons carried home the Small Boat Mixed Masters Category in the sunny generally high tide race.
Over-all, for Small boat Womens’ category, a women team of the PADS Adaptive Dragonboat Racing Team showed that even with disabilities, as they have blind, hearing impaired paddlers, they can still put up to speed against Dumaluan Beach Resort Pirates A which settled for the First Runner Up and Dauis Wild Dragon A who settled for the Second Runner Up.
In the Small Boat Open Category, with Dumaluan Beach Resort Pirates A as champions, Sugbu Mighty Dragons contended themselves with the First Runner Up (RU) while Tubigon’s Pundok Amila grabbed second RU.
In the Small Boat Mixed Category, Dumaluan Beach Resort Pirates A claimed the championship, while Cebu’s NAGAbugsay Dragonboat Racing Team of Naga City nailed the first RU and Dauis Wild Dragon A took second RU.
For the Small Boat Open Masters Category, PADS Adaptive Dragonboat Racing Team took the top post, while 1st RU was Bohol Paddlers Association Inc., and 2nd RU was Aboitiz Dragonboat Team.
In the Small Boat Mixed Master Category, Sugbu Mighty Dragons grabbed the championship trophy and PADS Adaptive Dragonboat Racing Team claimed the next spot.
For the Standard Boat (Long Boat) Mixed Category, Dauis Wild Dragon A packed the coveted championship trophy while Dumaluan Beach Resort Pirates A came up First RU and PADS Adaptive Dragonboat Racing Team has to pick second RU.
Dragon boating in Bohol has been identified as a come on for sports enthusiasts and tourists who enjoy water sports, even as Bohol pegs a stake as the eco-tourism capital in the Central Visayas. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)