Paradragon Elite Teamoff travels to Thailand to defend title

Paradragon Elite Teamoff travels to Thailand to defend title

The Philippine Accessible Persons with Disabilities Services (Pads) Paradragon Elite Team will compete in the 16th International Dragon Boat Federation (IDBF) World Dragon Boat Championships on August 8, 2023 in Pattaya, Pattaya, Thailand.

On Friday, August 4, the 2019 defending world champions held a livery and farewell ceremony for the dragon boat athletes at the Cebu Discovery Hotel Convention Center.

Pads founder John Paul “JP” Maunes said, “You are building national pride now. The painting ceremony highlights the representation of the Philippines at an international level such as the World Dragon Boat Championships.”

About 60 members will participate in the World Championships, of which 49 are athletes and the rest are coaches and staff.

Two Paradragon divisions will compete in the five-day event.

Paradragon Team 1 will be made up of members of varying abilities, while Team 2 will be made up of capable players and players of different abilities.

Each team is divided into two groups, 20 people in standard boats and 12 people in short boats.

Team Pads will join other athletes from the Philippines for a total of 170 competitors.

Their biggest challenge, Mones said, was cost.

“To be honest, we’re using personal expenses. We’ve been told by local government units and even national government agencies that it might take time (to get reimbursed),” he said.

Mones said they have yet to receive refunds and cash prizes for last year’s IDBF Club Crew World Championships in Florida.

“I want to thank our rowers. It is said, dili unta ni trabaho nila (it’s not their job), but we actually work as a team because we really want to bring honor to our country,” he said. explain.

Pads Paradragon Boat captain Arnold “Kap A” Balais said they are expecting strong opponents, especially from the US, Canada and India.

“We’ve got them ready as well (we’re ready against our opponents). We have (we have some) secret sauce here (here), our new additions,” he said, “and the chemistry and integration of the team has to Solid (chemistry and fusion) should be solid). No matter what our opponent is, it’s important that we think about our own game (it doesn’t matter who we’re playing against, it’s important to focus on the game).”

There are 26 deaf people of various abilities, including amputees, polio patients and some cancer survivors.

Karen Jean Dianon, a 32-year-old deaf Paradragon athlete from the city of Talisay, told SunStar Cebu through a translator that she was a little nervous and excited because it was her first time going abroad for the tournament.

“Three years paman ko diri (I’ve been with the team for three years), so the first time pa nako na ma sent sa (this is the first time I was sent) to Thailand. So basically I felt a little nervous we also Excited because our goal is to get at least 11 gold medals.”

The Paradragon teams will compete in five tournaments, each taking place August 8-12.

The 1,000-meter and 2,000-meter races are scheduled for two days, the 500-meter race for two days, and the 200-meter race for one day.

Delegates will conduct a water test on Aug. 7, the day before the race, to assess water flow.

The Pads Paradragon Elite Team are the current defending champions of the 2019 World Championships, also held in Pattaya, and have won four gold medals. (CHERRY ANN VIRADO, Benedict College Intern; CHRYS CHELSEA BERNALES, Cebu University Intern)

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