Nowra Water Dragons launch season at Sydney regatta

Teamwork: Nowra women’s team on their way to victory in the second heat
Teamwork: Nowra women’s team on their way to victory in the second heat

Sunday, August 5, saw the Nowra Water Dragons travel to Rodd Park at Dobroyd for the Dragon Boats NSW Winter Warmer Ten’s regatta.

This regatta is an introduction back into racing for teams about to embark on the season ahead. It is conventionally a 10-a-side race in a 20-person boat. Many clubs participate in the 48 races of the day; from Junior’s (14-25), to Premiers (25-40), to Senior A (>40) and to Senior B (>50), getting a feel for racing after a short break over the winter months.

Nowra competed with two teams in the Senior B Mixed division, the Open Women’s division and the Open Men’s division.

The competition, even at this early stage of the season, was intense, with many clubs trying to get the ascendancy for the season ahead. Some 23 clubs attended the regatta and competed in all of the above events.

The weather conditions were not made for dragon boat paddling, with the starting line a complete mess. The wind was blowing boats into one another and across the course. This made the starts a lottery as to who got the ascendancy at the start and with the course so short, it was a big advantage. Even with the difficulty, all clubs had a great time battling each other and the elements.

The first races of the day were the mixed boats; Nowra had two teams in the Mixed Senior B event. Both teams did well in their heats by either winning them or placing second. In the final, both teams did well, placing first and third with the strong Sydney DSA team dividing them. The times were within half a second of each other.

The afternoon saw the Open Men’s and Women’s races, with Nowra putting a team in each event. Again both teams competed well against younger and intense opposition; with the women’s team winning both of their heats and the men winning one and placing second in the other.

By the time the finals were run the wind was howling across the course, and the starting line was becoming a fiasco. The men came second to the DSA team by a dragon head, which was about how far in front they were at the start; so a great effort.

The women hit a marker buoy and just missed first place.

A successful day had by all. Nowra continues to shine in these events: Small Club Big Heart.

What is dragon boating?

Dragon Boating involves 20 paddlers, 2 abreast in a long boat. There is a steerer at the back and a drummer at the front who keeps the paddlers in time, motivating and encouraging the paddlers to pull the boat forward in unison.

It’s a great sport for people who enjoy being on the water in an environmentally friendly way. Come and try out on a Monday or Wednesday evening at 5pm  or Saturday morning at 8am.

Check times on Nowra Waterdragons site or talk to Peter Phillips on 0410 040 507.

Community regatta coming soon

Nowra Water Dragons and Outrigger Canoe Club inc will be holding their community regatta on Sunday, September 17, this year .The regatta is a chance for community-based teams and competing sports teams to come together and race in 200m races. It is a great opportunity for these community teams to see what dragon boat racing is about. The teams come together from all walks of life with students to soccer teams being involved.

Look on our website for more information or call Peter Phillips on 0410 040 507.