Team Canada placed second at the IDBF World Dragon Boat Racing Championship in Thailand in August. (File contributed/Tom Arnold)

Local athletes help Team Canada place second at world dragon boat championships

Victoria-based Tom Arnold took on the role as head coach for one of the teams for the first time

Canada’s national dragon boat team has walked away with 85 medals, placing second overall at the International Dragon Boat Federation Racing Championships which took place in Pattaya, Thailand at the end of August.

Of note was the Senior B team (age 50 plus), which took home 15 medals from 15 events, something that head coach Tom Arnold is extremely proud of.

“It was a thrilling experience,” Arnold said. “I think anytime you represent your country it’s a thrill, but for me this was my first time coaching a Canadian national team… that was a challenge and very exciting.”

ALSO READ: Vancouver Island athletes named to Dragon Boat Canada Senior B National Team

A majority of the Senior B team’s athletes originate from Vancouver Island, with 22 coming from VI Paddling, and others coming from the Fairway Gorge Paddling Club and Latitude 48 Paddling.

Other athletes from the team came from across the country, something Arnold thought was both a strength and a challenge.

“A huge part of it is that Canada just has tremendous talent in dragon boats,” he said. “But with athletes from across the country we don’t get to practise together often, so there’s a lot of trust in the training… We got to Thailand and had four practice days together and hoped it would work, and luckily it did.”

PHOTOS: The 25th Victoria Dragon Boat Festival kicks off with eye-dotting ceremony

Arnold adds that the sport is something designed for athletes of all calibres – from lifelong competitors to complete novices. The youngest competitor on the national team this year was 12, while the oldest was 71.

“The amazing thing about this sport is you’re never too old or too young to compete at a high-performance sport,” Arnold said, adding that he’s already looking forward to the next competition. “The next world championship in two years. We’re hopeful we’ll be able to lead the team again.”

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com


Send a Tweet: @NicoleCrescenzi

Like us on Facebook  

 

VI Paddling coaching team Trish Crumpton (left), Mallorie Nicholson, Andree St Denis, Tom Arnold, Andrea Keenan, and Verlie Martin at the IDBF World Dragon Boat Racing Championship in Pattaya Thailand in August. (File contributed/ Tom Arnold)

Just Posted

UVic student killed in bus crash remembered as passionate, kind

Emma Machado, 18, killed in bus crash near Bamfield on Friday

Oak Bay approves subdivision for lot that houses Maclure-designed heritage home

Mansion-style Blair Gowie house famous for its design and historical connection with Butchart family

MLA Andrew Weaver thins workload after illness, full recovery expected

BC Green Party leader felt symptoms at a public event in Langley, and was taken to hospital

Golfer aims for hole-in-one to raise cash for Victoria Hospice

Fundraiser event hits Highland Pacific Golf Course Sept. 17

VIDEO: Flames pick up 4-3 exhibition win over Canucks in Victoria

Vancouver split squad manages 3-2 OT triumph in Calgary

Canucks sign Brock Boeser to three-year, US$17.6-million deal

Young sniper will be in Vancouver Tuesday

B.C. forest industry looks to a high-technology future

Restructuring similar to Europe 15 years ago, executive says

RCMP conclude investigation into 2017 Elephant Hill wildfire

Files have been turned over to BC Prosecution Service

B.C. wants to be part of global resolution in opioid company bankruptcy claim

Government says settlement must include Canadian claims for devastation created by overdose crisis

Two Nanaimo residents share $5-million Lotto 6/49 prize

Jesse Logan and Teresa Winters Day matched all six numbers in Aug. 21 Lotto 6/49 draw

Island campground on the chopping block as ALC deadline looms

Owners fighting to continue facility’s operation, with a huge outpouring of support

B.C. ends ‘birth alerts’ in child welfare cases

‘Social service workers will no longer share information about expectant parents without consent’

Most Read