11/12/22 - The Return of the College Cup
The 2022 College Cup, held at Lake Merced in San Francisco, CA, is the first race of the season for the UC San Diego Dragon Boat Team. For many of our new paddlers, it is the first dragon boat race of their lives. The College Cup is a one day race on November 12th - compared to the other races in the year, the College Cup is a unique and intense competition consisting of only collegiate teams, battling it out in the Mixed 500, Open, and Women's divisions. Due to the pandemic, it has been 3 years since the last College Cup in 2019, and every day leading up to the race has been filled with anticipation and excitement.
UCSD entered two crews into the Mixed Division (UCSD Swag and UCSD Yolo), and one each for the Open (UCSD Serve) and Women's (UCSD Slay). As the first race after our recruitment, the Cup was the first opportunity to see how our new team would perform, and how our two months of hard work would look like on the water. Seeing an incredible performance from all four of our crews, every boat entered into the finals for their respective divisions. UCSD Swag placed 2nd in Division A with a time of 2:15:63 (a mere 0.08 seconds away from first!), while UCSD Yolo placed 1st in Division C. While neither UCSD Serve or UCSD Slay placed in the top 3 for their final divisions, with respective placements of 4th and 5th, it was an amazing show of effort and energy from every member involved.
It was a wonderful experience being able to race in the College Cup again after a 3 year break, and racing together for the first time with our new crews was an intensely emotional experience, bringing us closer to each other. With the next race being in March, we look forward to seeing how much improvement our team will have over this period, and our fight to take home even more medals next time.