The Rainbow Region Dragon Boat Club from Lennox Head was jubilant with their overall performance at the Kempsey Macleay 10s Regatta, held earlier this month.
One of many highlights was the a nail-biting final in the women’s division that saw the Rainbow Region team come second to their hosts, the Kempsey River Rats, by just 0.44 of a second.
In all, nine clubs from the north and central coasts met at Kempsey to race in this new format. Instead of the usual 20 paddlers per dragon boat there were only 10 and all paddlers had to be from the same club, so there was no combining forces!
Entered in the Women’s, Mixed and Open divisions the Rainbow Region attained first place in five of their six heats and made the semifinal in the Women’s and Opens.
The Women’s crew went on to win their semifinal and led the final until being pipped at the post by the hosts, the Kempsey crew.
The Rainbows went into this competition with renewed strength and determination, having spent the previous weekend undergoing intensive coaching in technique and racing skills with Kamini Jain, a Canadian sprint kayak Olympian and World Champion dragon boat and outrigger coach.
The next test for Rainbow Dragons will be the Grafton Jacaranda Regatta followed by Pan Pacific Masters Games on the Gold Coast – including 40-plus, 50-plus and 60-plus age divisions.
The Rainbows will combine with Gold Coast, Maroochy Sea Serpents and a few Kiwis, so they will be rubbing shoulders with several world champions.