PUERTO PRINCESA CITY—The Philippine dragon boat team added two more gold medals on Sunday to paddle its way to the overall title of the 2016 Asian Dragon Boat Championships here.
The Filipinos capped the successful campaign with victories in the 20-seater men’s 200 meters and 10-seater men’s 200m races that hiked their collection to five gold medals.
“Our goal was to win three gold medals and we’re really surprised to get more,” said head coach Len Escollante.
They finished the small boat men’s 200m in 46.808 seconds to subdue Japan (48.681) and Indonesia (48.903).
The Pinoy paddlers clocked 46.93 seconds in the standard men’s 200m to beat Chinese Taipei (49.93) in the finals before an ecstatic home crowd at the Baywalk area here.
Earlier, the Philippines prevailed in the standard boat men’s 500m, small boat junior mixed 500m and small boat women’s 500m, which came as the biggest surprise for the team in the two-day continental races.
“We didn’t expect them to win because we knew that Thailand and Indonesia are stronger. It was the first time our women’s squad paddled as a team,” said Philippine Canoe Kayak Federation president Jonne Go.
The PCKF organized the Asian championships together with the city of Puerto Princesa headed by mayor Lucilo Bayron, which will host the two-day 2016 Puerto Princesa International Club Crew Championships that began yesterday.
At the end of yesterday’s continental championships, the Philippines collected five gold and three silver medals capped by a second-place finish in the 10-seater junior mixed 200m against Chinese Taipei.