Central Coast Dragon Boat Club – 2012/13 NSW State Titles
Sea Dragons all fired up
The Sea Dragons racing crew from the Central Coast Dragon Boat Club has peaked at the right end of the season with strong results at the highly competitive NSW Dragon Boat State Titles recently held at the Sydney International Regatta Centre in Penrith. The Central Coast has once again shown it has what it takes to win, earning gold in the Master Mixed and Master Open and silver in the Master Women 500m finals.
The Master Women result was an incredible effort from a crew with seven State Title debutants. The team stuck to the race plan all day and peaked in the final, coming a very close second to this season’s Club Champions Pittwater and hitting the finish line a boat clear and pulling away from last year’s State Title winners the Nowra Waterdragons.
“The women’s crew is getting better and better every event,” said Coach Sandy Hauraki. “We are building our fitness and technique and having a great time too. Next year we will be hungry for gold!”
In a great show of sportsmanship, the ladies from the Sea Dragons formed an archway of paddles to congratulate the Pittwater team, who then returned the gesture to thank the Central Coast women for pushing them all the way to the finish line.
The Master Mixed team, after being beaten by less than a second last year, convincingly beat Nowra by a three second margin this year to become Masters Mixed State Champions for the first time. Over the 500m course the team ground out their rivals, pulling away with every stroke in a very strong, powerful performance.
In an exciting Master Open final, the Sea Dragons came from behind to chase down rivals Bei Loon and become State Champions for the second year in a row. The crew responded with precision to race calls for power and lift and paddled with heart to cross the line almost a second in front. Coach and Sweep Rick Bundy was keen to continue to build on this success saying “we now have to try for the 3peat next year!”
Head Coach Lorne Smith was also incredibly proud of the club’s efforts. “We had some fantastic times and results. It was a great achievement having everyone walk away with a medal from the day. When everything clicks and we are paddling as one, we can achieve excellent results. It was particularly pleasing to see how even with all the changes that have occurred to our team that we were able to improve our results from last year. It shows the fighting spirit of our team!”
The club is also proud of local corporate team the KANTONG Komodo Dragons who trained with them again this season. Under the guidance of Coach Joe Iacono, the crew from Berkeley Vale based business MARS Food has now been paddling for 3 seasons. The team maintained its incredible unbeaten record in the NSW Corporate Games, taking out first place against rivals Westpac and GHD in extremely rough and windy conditions at Dobroyd Aquatic Centre near Five Dock. The crew also improved from 5th to 2nd place this year in the Chinese New Year races at Darling Harbour. Several team members enjoyed the experience so much that they have decided to join the club. Susan Smith from MARS Food said “We would like to thank the CCDBC and Joe Iacono in particular for their support once again. We enjoy their competitive spirit and the focus on fitness and technique. Our team is made up of people from all parts of the business, some of them paddling for the first time this year. Dragon Boating has been a great way to get to know each other better while getting fit and the winning part is not too bad either!”
In other news, club member Peter Richardson has been recognised by Dragon Boat NSW’s as its Individual of the Year for his commitment and contribution to Sweep development. Sweeps stand at the rear of the boat and are responsible for aligning the boat at the start line, steering throughout the race and making race calls. A talented Sweep can be the difference between a win and a loss. Peter has shown his dedication to the sport by coordinating the Sweep Development program for the region over the last few years.
The club hopes to take its winning form into the National Titles, also being held at the high quality Sydney International Regatta Centre in Penrith this year. In three days of competition during the first week of the April school holidays the Sea Dragons will compete in 200m, 500m and 2km events against the best teams in the country.
While this is the end of season for 2012/13 the Central Coast Dragon Boat Club always welcomes new paddlers looking for fun and fitness on the water. All enquiries: 0422 337 772