GREYS BEACH was a virtual dragon’s lair yesterday as 20 dragonboats, each filled with a colourful team of 22 paddlers and a stroke rate drummer, took to the smooth waters of the Shoalhaven River to contest race four of the Dragonboat New South Wales race series.
The local Nowra team claimed two victorious by winning the masters open and the mixed grand masters events raced over a 250m sprint course. The meeting’s blue ribbon event, the open men’s 250m sprint, was won by the Chinese Youth League Club from Sydney.
It’s the first time a round of the state series has been held in the Shoalhaven and the picturesque river didn’t disappoint the many teams that travelled from across the state to compete
“At times the clubs can be a little picky and particular about where they race but I didn’t hear any complaints,” Dragonboats NSW chief operating office Melanie Cantwell said.
“We didn’t get the gorgeous summer sunshine we had anticipated but at least we didn’t get the 40 degree heat.
“The cloud cover made it pleasant and comfortable for everyone.”
Cantwell said negotiations will now start to bring the event back to the Shoalhaven again next January.
“We have outgrown our usual January venue in Wyong, so we decided to run the fourth round here on the Shoalhaven River and things went really well,” she said.
“The infrastructure around Greys Beach, and the local area, is perfectly suited for hosting a dragonboat regatta of this size.”
Dragonboats NSW and the Nowra Water Dragon Club are now gearing up for their biggest event of the year, the Chinese New Year race at Darling Harbour on January 23 and 24.
A full report on the Shoalhaven River regatta will appear in Wednesday’s South Coast Register.