1,200 Paddlers participate in Ras Al Khaimah Dragon Boat Race
With 85 teams and up to 1,200 paddlers from around the world, the Dragon Boat Festival 2019 kicked off on Friday on the Ras Al Khaimah Creek.
“The teams, including 20 to 50 members each, competed in six categories – Corporate Cup 200m, Community Cup 200m, Women’s 200m, Open 200m, Mixed 200m, and Mixed 1000m category,” Mustafa Shahin, director of challenging adventure and head of the organising committee, told Khaleej Times.
The two-day Dragon Boat Race started from 8 am on Friday and continued till late in the afternoon. “The event is a good chance to have fun and meet paddlers of other nationalities,” said Shahin.
“The event is supported by all local departments in the emirate, including the RAK Tourism Development Authority and National Ambulance.”
Adil Shaikh, a 19-year-old Indian resident from Dubai, told Khaleej Times that he has been boat racing for 8-10 years. “This is my second time to participate in this race which teaches about coordination and understanding.”
Georgina Monjaraz, a 32-year-old Mexican expat, said she is a big fan of boat racing. “This is my second time to take part as I love to be part of a team sport. It is a good way to know people, let alone being in the water in such hot weather today.”
Alexander Mahiat from Belgium said: “This is my first time to compete in this race. I love the atmosphere, especially team spirit and unity.”
Filipina participant, 42-year-old Jennylyn Gonzales Sunga, told Khaleej Times that this was her second time. “However, I have already participated in a dragon boat race in Abu Dhabi two weeks back.” She said the competition is challenging. “We are competing with the best of the best from around the globe,” she said. “I have just started racing some six months back, and that’s it,” she said. “I have now all the skills needed for racing.”