Asterisk Dragon Boat team places first and second
The Asterisk Dragon Boat silver paddling team placed first for the first time, and the blue paddling team placed second in the Long Beach Spring Race at Marine Stadium on Sunday, April 22.
Both teams competed in the first round before progressing to the semifinal and final rounds. The winning team was determined by the fastest time it took them to complete the race. Overall, the silver team took the gold medal, beating the blue team, taking silver medal.
“Competing was stressful because it was my first time stroking for a race and we set the pace for the entire boat. However, it was all worth it from the amazing feeling I felt at the end, and it was really surprising that we won because usually our blue team is usually faster than silver. This win shows the hard work that we put in during this season,” team member junior Amber Shamaan said.
Team members go to Mother’s Beach on Saturdays to practice on the water, and they work on paddling and conditioning at a member’s pool on Sundays. Training sessions help new members work on their technique and get them ready for the competition season.
“As a team, we’ve spent 14 weeks preparing for the big day. Every time there is a practice, we all get better with each grueling workout. We’ve spent countless hours and days working out when all we’ve wanted to do was sleep. It was all worth it; seeing Asterisk silver win was such an honor. I’ve never been more proud as a captain and as a friend,”captain junior Megan Chan said.
Leading up to the race, newcomers take advice from the more experienced members and captain senior Bernard Yu gives tips and a chant to motivate and prepare his team.
“As captain, I think the best way to push my team to be its best is to grow closer and connect with the paddlers. When everyone feels like they’re part of a family, they’ll naturally want to work harder because they don’t want to let down their fellow teammates,” Yu said. “The team has given me a lot in the past, so leading this team and pushing it to grow is my way of giving back to it.”
By Edward Garcia, Staff writer
Photo courtesy of Bernard Yu