The inaugural 1st INTERNATIONAL DRAGON BOAT FEDERATION (IDBF) CANCER SURVIVORS WORLD CUP 2011 held in conjunction with MALAYSIA INTERNATIONAL DRAGON BOAT FESTIVAL (MIDBF) took place at the Putrajaya Water Sports Complex from October 20 to 23, 2011. I was very fortunate to be on the crew representing Abreast In A Boat at this regatta.
Most of the crew arrived a few days before the regatta and we stayed at the Pullman Putrajaya Lakeside Hotel, conveniently located across the street from the race site. This beautiful five star hotel featured a fabulous breakfast buffet every morning, offering endless healthy and delicious choices to start the day, getting us through the race days where there was little time for nourishment between races.
Each day during our stay in Malaysia started out with clear skies and sunshine, about 30+ degrees and very humid. With the exception of the two days we raced, every afternoon featured a torrential downpour, followed by rain in varying degrees of intensity. The rain was so heavy at times, I swear it would have sunk the boats if it had happened during the races. It was probably a good thing to be in Malaysia during their “rainy season”, as the temperatures would have been even higher without the rain to cool things off each day.
We paddled in four races on Saturday, taking one bronze and one silver medal, both with 22-person crews. On Sunday, we had an unprecedented eight races and managed to bring home two more bronze medals, one with a 12-person crew and the other with a 22-person crew. My focus at regattas has always been on having fun and the excitement of the race – getting medals is a bonus I hadn’t even considered.
Many thanks to our Manager, Brenda Tierney, who kept us organized and in the boat on time, despite the disorganization and many changes to the race schedule.
The wind-up party took place at the Zouk Club in Kuala Lumpur on the Sunday evening. There was a delicious buffet dinner and lots of dancing in this modern high tech nightclub.