MANILA, Philippines - Philippine Air Force topped the women’s 300m standard boat division to lead the winners in the opening leg of the 2014 Cobra Energy Drink-PDBF Dragon Boat Regatta at the Baywalk along Roxas Boulevard in Manila recently.
The Air Force paddlers clocked one minute and 40.8 seconds to beat the Philippine Coast Guard A side in the event that drew a record participation of 49 teams.
They also narrowly topped the mixed class (1:24.31), nosing out Coast Guard (1:24.86) with Triton finishing third (1:25.84) in the event backed by the country’s leading energy drink.
Air Force, however, failed to complete a sweep of all three race categories, settling for second (1:21.85) behind top favorite Army (1:17.37), with Coast Guard placing for third (1:22.07) in the meet organized by the Philippine Dragon Boat Federation.
PDBF president Marcia Cristobal said 21, 15 and 13 teams took part in the men’s, mixed and women’s races, respectively, “making our first leg the biggest so far in terms of participation.
“There would have been more entries had we pushed through with the original schedule of March 2 but some clubs had to beg off because their paddlers also had work on weekends,” said Cristobal.
“This record turnout is a sign that the regatta has become the undisputed No. 1 event for dragon boat rowing,” said Cobra assistant brand manager Jennilyn Inumerable. “This bodes well for the succeeding legs of the series.”
Cristobal added the PDBF is looking forward to having a bigger field in the succeeding legs “since we expect more provincial teams like those from Lake Buhi, Camarines Sur and Laguna to join the event.
“We might need more boats or make our times longer if this trend continues in the next legs of the Cobra series,” said Cristobal.