Just a week after collecting two gold medals in a big race in Singapore, the Go For Gold-Philippine Dragonboat Team brought home another pair of golds from a highly competitive meet in China.
The Filipino paddlers from the Philippine Canoe-Kayak Dragonboat Federation ruled both the 500m and 250m small boat open category of the prestigious 2019 Beijing International Dragonboat Tournament where the best under-23 teams in China participated.
The Nationals clocked two minutes and 30.85 seconds in the 500m in asserting their mastery over Chinese squads Dubula (2:39.88) and Beijing Fuxing Dragon Warriors (2:41.12) after winning the 200m (1:10.56) in dominating fashion.
It was a follow up to the twin victories of the Go For Gold-backed paddlers in the recent DBS Marina Regatta in Singapore.
Assistant team captain Ojay Fuentes, who celebrated his 20th birthday on Thursday when the Filipinos emerged victorious, was ably supported by a solid crew featuring Archie Baylosis, Kim Gabriel Baylosis, Daniel Ortega and Roberto Pantaleon.
Seasoned paddler Norwell Cajes also contributed to the success together with Leo Jane Remarim, Jonathan Ruz, John Paul Selencio, Jerome Solis, drummer John James Pelagio and helmsman Christian Burgos.
“Resulta po ito ng lahat ng pagpupusige namin sa training. Gagawin po namin lahat para magtuloy-tuloy ito hanggang sa SEA Games,’’ said Fuentes in Filipino.
The national paddlers from the PCKDF, the legitimate body in the country in the sport, was also impressive in Singapore with a 1:00.76 clocking for the gold in the 10-seater premier women’s division 200m that duplicated their feat in the 20-seater mixed category.
"These victories will definitely help boost the confidence of our team going into the SEA Games,’’ said Go For Gold godfather Jeremy Go, who dabbled in the sport a few years ago.
Besides dragonboat, Go For Gold is also a staunch supporter of SEAG-bound national athletes from skateboarding, wrestling, sepak takraw, cycling, triathlon and chess, among others.