Tuesday, August 17, 2010
HK: Dragonboat Carnival 2010 - The Capsize!
After fueling up on breakfasts, we headed to the Dragonboat Carnival at the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade. The three-day event was culminating that Sunday. The carnival saw 12 countries and 191 teams participating this year.
It was a beautiful day, despite weather forecast for rain and Typhoon Chanthu's visit which flooded the Northern Territories.
Lining the promenade were scores of people as far as the eye could see - athletes, spectators and supporters, with everyone feeling the buzz. Lots of screaming fans too, awaiting some celebrity participants. Korean boyband U-KISS would be rowing for the KBS Dream Team. I don't really know any of the celebrities, so pardon me if I get any of them wrong.
Some dragonboat supporters went all out in wigs, colourful costumes and tattoos.
We were participating too! Well, four of us (from left to right: Violet, Peter, Darren and Geck Geck) were in the "Bathtub Race" - a 100m race just for fun.
It was hard not to believe the rabid cheering was not for us.
Miss Ang Geck Geck, whom we affectionately call AGG for short. I mean, not because she's short, although...well, umm. OK, just the name. She would be rowing with Pete, who is more than twice her size, weight and
Our four bloggers all geared up! They did some warm-up rowing exercises.
I am guessing these are more celebrity paddlers. My apologies, I'm awful at recognising celebrities.
This is the bathtub that paddlers will race in! When I first saw it from afar, I was going, "Oh no, surely not these wobbly plastic sinks!"
Well, that's Pete and AGG waving their last goodbyes. What happened next...I will have to show via Jerome's most excellent photos. Halfway into the race...
It looks like balance is more difficult to achieve than speed. Darren and Violet were streaking ahead though...and got second place, just like their boat number.
Poor Pete and AGG got a marine bath instead. Honestly, this was not planned, even though we joked about it. Fortunately rescue came quick. The saltwater taste remained a souvenir throughout the rest of the day, but the capsize memories will remain with us for a lot longer!
Check out Jerome's post with all the close-up photos of the capsize!
Part of the special highlights is the Pink Dragonboat Race, which aims to raise awareness of breast cancer and to encourage survivors to lead active lives. We were there to support the Singapore team, Pink Spartans, made up of cancer survivors and supporters. They won first prize!
This must be the Korean boyband members. Looks like they won something? I had been a little skeptical if boybands knew anything about rowing dragonboats...
OK, I take it back. The guy on the right sure looks like he's well-equipped for rowing!
This is what all the paddling is for. The shiny trophies featuring ornate dragons along with some heavy-looking medals, plus the honour that comes with them. Congratulations to the teams who won, and kudos to everyone who participated!
Posted 6:50 PM