The Philippine Canoe-Kayak Dragonboat Federation (PCKDF) bagged four gold and three silver medals to claim the overall championship crown in the 2017 Penang International Dragon Boat Festival held at the Teluk Bahang Dam in Malaysia.
Powered by veteran rowers, the national squad reigned supreme in the 200m international premier mixed as it registered 47.63 seconds – two seconds ahead of two Malaysia teams.
Malaysia Team A finished the race in 49.59 seconds followed by Malaysia Team B with 50.40 seconds.
The Filipino also dominated the 200m international junior Under-24 open in 50.22 seconds, beating Pacific West Dragon Boat Club-Malaysia (51.72) and Insaniah Dragon Boat Team-Malaysia (52.32).
The Philippines wound up second in the 200m women’s international premier with a time record of 57.37 seconds and the 200m international premier open with 48.59 seconds. Both events were dominated by Thailand.
The Filipinos also won two more gold medals and one silver medal in the 500m category of the tournament participated in by more than 30 teams from different parts of the world.
The tournament served as the national team’s tuneup for the 2018 Asian Games to be held in Jakarta and Palembang in Indonesia in August and the prestigious 2018 World Championships at the Lake Lanier Gainesville in Georgia, US in September.
“It’s a great way to end the 2017 season with these gold medals. We are looking forward to another great season next year. It’s part of our preparation for the 2018 Asian Games as we aim to contribute medal for Team Philippines,” said national team mentor Len Escollante who was accompanied by PCKDF president Jonne Go.
The PCKDF is fresh from winning three gold medals in the 2017 Taiwan International Dragon Boat Championships where they broke the world record in the 20-seater men’s 200m race.
“We are now preparing for the world championships and the Asian Games next year,” added Go.