Oceanus, Hillview dragon boat teams earn Pan Am golds
Oceanus Dragon Boat Club rowed to a gold medal on Friday in the 2000m mixed event on the second day of the Pan American Club Crew Championship held in Panama City, Panama.
The Tobago-based team stopped the clock in ten minutes, 05:18 seconds for the top position. Sky Dragon Boat Club was second in 10:09.90, and Panadragon Premier took bronze in ten minutes 16:25 (three-second penalty).
On the opening day of the championship on Thursday, Oceanus secured the silver medal in the men`s 2000m which was the first race of the championship. Host team Friendship won the race in 9:42.36 and Oceanus finished in nine minutes and 50.14 seconds.
In an interview with TT Dragon Boat Federation, Oceanus paddler Damian Leach said, “It feels great, getting that opportunity to showcase all the work we have been putting in for all those months. It shows that the reward of the work is paying off.”
On their silver medal, Leach said, “We went up against some of the best teams in the world; conditions are pretty similar to TT, but it is really good conditions for racing.” Leach promises more medals to follow and predicts a podium finish every time his team races. Oceanus will be competing in the 500m on Saturday and 200m on Saturday.
TT`s HVC Hyperion lifted the trophy in the U18 Open 1000m winning in 4:51.71 whilst Dragon Den Warriors was second clocking 5:08.65. HVC also won the 2000m under-18 title,
HVC's Vishal Ramlogan said, “The boys have been enjoying the experience a lot, getting to see everything what Panama has to offer, and we are very excited. We wanted to have more junior teams from TT but unfortunately everyone could not be here. We will be representing for all of TT.”
Ramlogan is optimistic that more under-18 teams will compete at the next championships.
This is HVC`s first competition outside of TT waters and Ramlogan believed preparations were ideal. “We would like to thank Aquaholics for helping us train and all the advice they gave to us. The conditions here are quite similar to Trinidad`s open water so we did good to adapt to the conditions over here.”
Hillview College teacher and HVC manager Damian Charrie told Newsday that even though there is just one other team in their division, the races include other premier teams.
"We came here to test ourselves internationally with a young team. Everybody has been training for less than a year, and a few guys training for three months.
"Today, in terms of time, we beat a lot of premier teams," he said.
HVC will be competing in the 500m race on Saturday and the 200m event on Sunday.
There are teams from Argentina, Bahamas, Brazil, Colombia, Canada, Puerto Rico, USA, Panama and Trinidad and Tobago.
"Oceanus, Hillview dragon boat teams earn Pan Am golds"