Mandani Bay ideal venue for int’l dragon boat races — former PDBF president

By: Glendale G. Rosal - Multimedia Correspondent - CDN Digital | August 27,2022 - 10:25 AM
A dragon boat team paddles their way to the starting line during the Mandani Bay Dragon Boat Regatta. | Photo by Glendale Rosal

A dragon boat team paddles their way to the starting line during the Mandani Bay Dragon Boat Regatta. | Photo by Glendale Rosal

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The success of the inaugural Mandani Bay Dragon Boat Regatta last August 20, 2022 earned the praise from ex-Philippine Dragon Boat Federation (PDBF) president and International Dragon Boat Federation (IDBF) certified Technical Official Marcia Cristobal.

A total of 55 dragon boat teams from around the country converged at the Mandani Bay boardwalk area to compete in various categories. The major dragon boat racing event was the biggest in terms of number of paddlers to date, according to one of the organizers, JP Maunes of the Philippine Accessible Disability Services (PADS). 

Despite minor bumps during the race, it wrapped up successfully, with the San Jose Banatti of Negros Oriental ending as the winningest team with two titles and a runner-up finish.

Mandani Bay: Ideal venue

For Cristobal, Mandani Bay is an ideal venue to hold international dragon boat races, especially the world championships. Although the Mandani Bay boardwalk is still under development, it was still able to host and accommodate as much as a thousand people on race day.

“The place is good. Actually, we’re already thinking if we only have a minimum of 30 boats, we can join the bidding with the IDBF so that the world championships can be done here. The place is very nice, we feel the support of the mayor,” Cristobal told CDN Digital. 

Cristobal said that they would prefer Mandani Bay’s boardwalk area than Boracay Island due to some technical aspects. 

She explained that Boracay might be a world class tourist destination, but its water isn’t that deep compared to IDBF’s required depth. 

“There was a time in Boracay where an international dragon boat event happened, but there were instances that the tide there goes too low. Compared here, the water’s depth is consistent. We always look at the water depth because IDBF has a minimum required water depth of about 3.5-meters,” said Cristobal. 

With that in mind, Mandani Bay is an ideal venue for a world championship in the future. 

“For me it’s ideal here. I appreciate the place, it’s a very big place, we can cater and host world championships here,” added Cristobal. 

Mandaue Junior’s League

She also praised the youth dragon boat teams of PADS that competed in the first Mandaue City Junior’s League 200m small boat race. 

Cristobal believes that with the local government support, these barangay-based teams will become top-notch paddlers in the future. 

“I’m so impressed by their junior 24-below. Their potentiality they can reach the world championships. Hopefully, their LGU will be supporting them. Mayor Jonas Cortes stated that he is in full support with this group,” said Cristobal.

Barangay Looc topped the race while Barangay Jagobiao placed second followed by Labogon and Tipolo. These teams were trained by the member of PADS dragon boat team. 

“This will be a medium for the Cebuanos, especially from Mandaue to enter in the world championships. We all know that the PADS has already proven themselves in the world championships. Give them maximum of two years, these young boys can be a world class athletes in the future, provided with the support of the government,” Cristobal concluded. 

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TAGS: 3.5 meters, Boracay, Cebu‬, Cebu Daily News, cebu news, Cristobal, dragon boat races, former PDBF president, IDBF, International Dragon Boat Federation, Mandani Bay, technical aspects

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