Just a few days after the conclusion of recruitment, the UC San Diego Dragon Boat team brought their newly-formed team to the 6th annual San Diego Dragon Boat Race at their home site of Mission Bay. The race, which occurred on October 3rd and 4th, would not have been possible without UC San Diego students volunteering all day on Saturday, and then both volunteering and racing throughout Sunday.
UC San Diego proved to be the dominant college team at the race by earning 1st in the College Division, 2nd in Mixed Division A, and 1st in Mixed Division C. The Dragon Boat team also earned a trophy for the overall fastest 500m race of the day. This was a solid performance, which is notably more impressive after considering that tryouts had been held throughout the week before. Practices were held six out of the seven days before the race, and all the recruits were pushing themselves to the limit on each day in hopes of securing a spot on the team. They displayed incredible mental fortitude, pushing each other throughout the week and then continuing to push each other during the race.
Bursts of pouring rain interfered with other events throughout San Diego, but they proved to be nothing more than a mild inconvenience to the paddlers at the race. Theodore “OP Ted Man” Ochiai described it well on his feature with CBS 8 News: “We train through everything, so we’re ready for this.” For the next five weeks, UC San Diego Dragon Boat will be training hard for the CDBA College Cup Championship, and you can be sure they’ll be ready when it comes.