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Rio Tinto Alcan 2014

Rio Tinto Alcan Dragon Boat Festival – June 21 & 22, 2014

Could it get any better than our weekend at Rio Tinto?  The sun shone for three glorious days and the temperature was perfect for paddling.  Just enough sun and warmth to dry off after fast paced races where paddles slashed through the choppy waters.  It is hard to believe that those little water ferries could make such a swell!

Although we didn’t have our traditional Flower Ceremony this year, we did get to experience our sense of “we are all in it together” with the paddle arch.  I am sure we all remembered those who have been touched by cancer in our own way, either through hugging our seat mates, or by just taking a minute of silence on the start line to reflect.

AIAB Rio Tinto 2014

Abreast In A Boat at Rio Tinto Alcan 2014

The CIBC Breast Cancer Challenge Race was so much fun.  FORT-itude’s fitness regime paid off and they dominated for first place. Rocky Point and Deas played tag throughout the race with Rocky Point winning by a dragon’s nose for second place.

AIAB Crews ~ CIBC Breast Cancer Challenge

AIAB Crews ~ CIBC Breast Cancer Challenge

One of my favourite experiences at the races, is joining in with FORT-itude in their pre-race warm up.  Juanita is so full of energy and she makes it fun and enticing.  Who doesn’t like dancing Gangnam style?  One by one all the breast cancer teams join in until it is almost like a “flash mob”, once again demonstrating we are all in this together.

Paddle Arch ~ Rio Tinto Alcan

Paddle Arch ~ Rio Tinto Alcan

It is pretty empowering to see the mass of pink showing to everyone that we take this sport seriously!

The Information Booth was a huge success, as usual.  Thank you to Sheila Blair, Bunny Rosse, and everyone who volunteered to help set up, man, and take down the booth.  A big thank you to the RTA organizers who gave us a prime location for the booth and who helped it run without a hitch!

Paddling in the Rio Tinto Alcan Dragon Boat Festival was a great place to show thousands of people who we are, and to demonstrate that you can live a full and active life after a breast cancer diagnosis! We all paddled in “OUR RACE AGAINST BREAST CANCER”.

Written By: Linda Hopwo

 CIBC Breast Cancer Challenge Race Times

Abreast With FORTitude     2:16.30

Abreast At Rocky Point       2:23.50

Abreast Deas Divas               2:23.77

Abreast Up The Creek           2:37.78