|Aoraki Dragon Boat
Click these tabs to see the regatta Aoraki ran 2007 to 2008 (incl NZDBA Nationals).
Ice Breaker 2007
Note that 2007-08 was the first season for Aoraki Dragons so the focus was on getting boats to train and race in, and then find a venue and the means to put on a race day.
Dragon Boat committee had barely taken on the role of running the sport, and was not even named "Aoraki" till 30-Aug-07. Original committee was Meri Gibson (ABOL), Noel Anderton (Paddlateers), Vai Papali'i (Canty Paddling Club), Peter Mitchell and Lorraine Flintoff (Tu Meke), Rick Smith (Evacut), Julian Yee (Sampan Warriors), Terry Coyle (CCC) and Erina Parks.
Location, Date and Major Winners: not applicable
See all Ice Breaker history.
Early Bird 2008 - Chinese New Year
Saturday 9-Feb-08 was a landmark occasion. It was Aoraki's very first event, the inaugural Dragon Boat Regatta, held in conjunction with Chinese New Year (which fell on 7-Feb-2008).
The venue for the Dragon Boat racing was Kerr's Reach in Dallington. It signalled the start of a relationship with other users of the Avon River, in particular Canterbury Rowing, kayak and canoe clubs, Waka Ama and the Surf Life Saving.
At the end of racing, all participants seemed to agree it is a superb natural arena for the sport!
Results - Note these are from the HEATS only
Formal proceedings for the day started at 8:30 am with a very emotional Whakawaatea (or Maori blessing) by local kaumatua Riki Pitama. Pastor Graham Reid of Spreydon Baptist Church replied. Then a Lion Dance Troupe performed a stirring launching ritual for the boats.
Racing started around 9:30am, with each crew having four heats - the best three race times determined their place in the finals. Races were run at 10 minutes intervals, with three boats per race. Races included Corporate, Open and BCS teams, as well as school squads.
After the 500m Finals, a series of 200m sprint races were run. Trophy presentation was at about 4:15 after the last race (in the Riverside Pool Club).
Teams tent sites were allocated ('BYO' tents, table and furniture) along the top of the grassy knoll overlooking Kerr's Reach, with Porrit Park behind us to the east. These had prime viewing of the latter stages of the race, and a short stroll to "Crew loading". Tent sites are non-powered, but drinking water, toilets and showers were available at the Riverside clubrooms.
Six Portaloos plus a couple of flush toilets were set up between the tent area and Crew Loading. Food vendors (Chinese food, Pizza, Hot Dogs and fries, Coffee, Ice Cream etc) were set up near the tent area.
See all Early Bird history.
South Island Champs 2008
Aoraki's main Dragon Boat Regatta for 2008 was on Saturday 1-March (Corporate and Open) and Sunday 2-March-08 (Schools). This was the first full regatta to be staged on the Avon.
Date: 1, 2-Mar-08 (Sat, Sun)
Open Grand Final (500m) was won by "CPC Canterbury Dragons" in 2 min 43.45 1, followed by Ridge Riders (2:43.53) and Sampan Warriors (2:43.70).
In the Open B Final, winners were "Tu Meke" in a very fast 2 min 38.20, then "Give It a Go" 2:59.49 and "Abreast of Life" (3:01.23).
Corporate Grand Final (500m) was won by "Screws Loose" (Corrections Dept) in 2 min 40.58, closely followed by Beca Crewsaders (2:41.00) and third were Airways "Paddlateers" (2:48.75).
Corporate B Final winner was "CIAL (Flying Dragons)" in 2:41.69 then "CCC Cruisers" (2:44.23) and Evacut Express (2:44.42)
Winner of the Partington Cup (500m) was "CPC Canterbury Dragons" in 2 min 42.97. Second was Screws Loose (2:47.35), then Tu Meke (2:48.21).
Seconds Total Times Ranking
Shirley Boys - Gold 163.60 166.70 151.81 482.11 1
See all South Island Champs history.
NZDBA National Championships 2008 - a true 'test'
Canterbury was extremely well represented at the NZDBA-sanctioned National Championships, hosted by Auckland Dragonboats on 29th and 30th-March-08 at Lake Pupuke. On behalf of South Island teams, Aoraki thanks Gavin Franicevic and NZDBA's Dave Elliott and their team for putting together a great event.
Adult team racing - Saturday 29-March
Screws Loose impressed with the power paddling throughout the day, showing the corporates how to win all the heats at a regatta! But our sympathy goes out to the Corrections crew who could not quite nail the crucial fifth win in the Grand Final! A very noble Silver to Pom and his team...
Meanwhile, Canterbury Dragons and Tu Meke made the Open Grand Final. But Lake Pupuke proved to be a very tricky venue to paddle on when the strong North Easterly whips across. To the Christchurch teams' cost, the swell meant they each took on a huge amount of water by about the three-quarter mark. But they battled on, draggin' the extra weight and coping with the now-rocking boats. In CPC's case they barely crossed the line before performing a quite graceful roll! Meanwhile, Tu Meke came to rest with about an inch of freeboard!
Breast Cancer Division
Christchurch's Abreast of Life finished off a very full season with an impressive showing at the Nationals. Two weeks earlier they had competed well at the Wellington Festival, and Lake Pupuke say seven BCS gather for their ultimate showdown.
A very strong crew from Gold Coast posted some very fast times during the day, but ABOL were probably the most consistent crew posting times of around 3:05. So this set them up for a prime lane position in the Division's Final.
A feature of racing on Pupuke had been the swell and cross winds, so the juggling and josttling on the start line was a key factor. The Race starter had to pick a time when all the boats were at least roughly ready, but unfortunately for ABOL, this coincided with when they were complying with orders to back-paddle.
But despite starting the race 'heading in the wrong direction' the crew translated their frustrations into a powerful race, to finish across the line a hare's breath behind Busting with Life from Auckland. These two New Zealand teams seem to have an ongoing battle each year where the trophy yoyos from one to the other.
As Chair Meri Gibson says "there is always next year to get it back again".
Schools Day - Sunday 30-March
Well when it comes to Boys teams in New Zealand Dragon Boating, there is surely only one name to listen for - Shirley Boys High School. John Fox and Russell Stocks have developed an awesome group of boys who are fizzing whenever they get near a boat! They showed teams of all grades how to churn through the course, recording an astounding 2 minutes 10 seconds later on Sunday.
St Margaret's girls were again lead by Rick Smith from Evacut (and Aoraki's Board). They are a team who certainly enjoy their sport, and it seems their Auckland trip is no exception.
The St Margaret’s team was fifth overall from 23 girls’ teams on Sunday. They won their first two heats and were second in their third. SMC made it into the Grand final against the two Epson Girls Grammar school teams, CGHS and Westlake Girls High. Unfortunately SMAC couldn’t match their pace in the final and finished fifth. It was a fantastic result with the girls determined to make amends after our disappointing showing in Christchurch.
Another of Aoraki's 'cooperative' is Scott Johnson of CIAL's Flying Dragons. Or as Christchurch Girls High team calls him - "Iceman"! Well Scotty's team performed well again, taking home the Silver medal in the Girls Division (and providing heaps of entertainment for for the other passengers on their flight back to the Mainland).
Iceman described racing side by side by side with the two Epsom Girls Grammar School for 500m as "fantastic... thrilling beyond belief from this sweeps point of view". And thats what it's all about...
See all NZDBA Nationals history.
|Affiliated to NZDBA||updated: 10-Aug-2016 :: (c) Noel Anderton|