After winning 4 golds in Florida, PADS Dragon Boat Team eyes bigger races next year

By: Glendale G. Rosal - CDN Digital Correspondent | July 28,2022 - 05:31 PM
PADS dragon boat

The PADS Dragon Boat Team displayed grit and determination on their way to winning four gold medals in the 13th Club Crew World Championships in Sarasota, Florida.

CEBU CITY, Philippines — After their historic feat in the recent International Dragon Boat Federation’s (IDBF) 13th Club Crew World Championships in Sarasota, Florida, the Philippine Accessible Disability Services, Inc. (PADS) Dragon Boat Team is now eyeing bigger races next year.

PADS dragon boat team recently became the first Filipino para dragon boat squad to win not just one, but four gold medals in the Club Crew World Championships.

In addition, they are now considered the inaugural champions in the IDBF para dragon boat category.

The Pinoys dominated the 2,000-meter small boat PD2 category, the small boat PD1 and PD2 200m races, and the 500m small boat PD2 category.

“We are aiming to compete for the IDBF World Cup of Nations next year in Hong Kong where the top 16 national teams from all over the world will compete. The next club crew world championships will be in 2024 in Italy. This November, we have been invited to compete as a guest team in Guam,” JP Maunes, PADS team manager told CDN Digital.

Maunes revealed that aside from the Guam invitation, numerous national dragon boat federations from various countries have also invited them.

“We got several invitations from national dragon boat federations to compete in their countries to inspire more people of the story of PADS,” added Maunes.

He also revealed that the team will also focus on organizing their upcoming dragon boat race, the 1st Mandani Bay Dragon Boat Regatta this August 20, 2022, in Mandaue City.

Maunes

PADS team manager JP Maunes wearing the gold medals the team won. | Photos from PADS and Maunes’ Facebook pages.

EMOTIONAL WIN

Maunes said that their tremendous success in the Club Crew World Championships was very emotional given the hardships the team has gone through.

“It was a very emotional journey. Our trials were very difficult heading to the world championships. There were also lots of distractions that the team’s morale almost broke. But as a team, we had each other, we supported each other, and faced the challenges to reach our goal. We don’t want the opportunity to go to waste,” added Maunes.

He revealed that during their last gold medal race in the Club Crew World Championships, everyone on the team, including him broke down in tears.

“During the last gold medal race, we broke down in tears. We were overwhelmingly happy. No words could express our feeling at that time. We were truly grateful to the Filipino community in Sarasota for their support. They came together to ensure we have all we need during the competition. We owe them a lot for their generosity. They took care of us despite their busy schedule,” said Maunes.

Manues said that the Filipino community in Sarasota, Florida provided them with a team of physical therapists comprised of Filipino PTs.

He said that the Filipino “Bayanihan spirit” uplifted the team’s morale and confidence in winning the races.

RECOGNITION & INCENTIVES

Maunes said that they can’t help but become emotional because of the hardships they went through, particularly their financial problems.

He said that most of the 25-man PADS dragon boat team have to loan money to fund their tickets to fly to Florida. He mentioned that when they get home, they are planning to hold a fund-raising event to pay off their loans.

However, they are very thankful to their generous sponsors who supported them for the Club Crew World Championships.

“We’re hoping that at least our government can reimburse the funds we spent in Florida because most of us have hefty loans to pay when we return home. Also, we’re hoping to receive recognition and incentives, especially for our athletes. They deserve it because we represented the Philippines in the world championships,” said Maunes.

The team is scheduled to arrive in Cebu on August 4.

Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes, according to Maunes is planning to host a heroes welcome for them at Bai Hotel.    /rcg

ALSO READ: 

PADS off to US for IDBF 13th Club Crew World Championships stint

Mandani Bay Dragon Boat Regatta 2022 to unfurl on Aug 20

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TAGS: 1st Mandani Bay Dragon Boat Regatta, Cebu‬, Cebu Daily News, cebu news, Dragon Boat, Florida, IDBF 13th Club Crew World Championships, Mandaue City, Mayor Jonas Cortes, pads, PADS dragon boat, Sarasota

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