Dragon boaters take to water in Welland

The 2014 Canadian Dragon Boat Championships took place this weekend in Welland. The International Flatwater Centre played host for the 8th annual event.

Dragon boat is the essence of team work, dedicated athletes working in perfect symmetry all charging for the finish line.

About 2,000 people and 84 crews took part in the competition.

“I have diabetes and it’s all gone,” said Manny Directo, a 74-year-old racer.

Dragon boat is for everyone regardless of athletic ability.

“Dragon boat is accessible. The most dynamic sport. Twenty people in boat. No rock stars. Everybody’s got the same job,” said one racer.

“It doesn’t matter what your journey in life is. People say I don’t have big enough arms. You know what, anybody can do it,” said Jordan Morgan, a national team athlete.

There are hardcore competitive racers and then theres those who just want to be sociable and have a good time.

Directo says the sport keeps him young. He says he’ll go until he’s 80. He says age shouldn’t be an excuse.

“Come on over. I was one like that. I can’t do it. I have arthritis. I’m too old…like this,” he said.

The course will host events for the 2015 Pan Am games in July, and according to athletes, it’s world class.


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Tee off says:

Great team work! Everyone should get involved.

steelers says:

they go fast

Ti Cat Fan says:

Should try this sometime!

Hanne says:

looks like fun

Joanna says:

sounds like a fun sport!

Jane says:


Bohdan D says:

Great race

Pansy says:

Great upper body exercise!

anna says:

Wow–what a great team sport! It looks fun but exhausting!

Giggles says:

Looks like great fun

Giggles says:

Manny really enjoys this

Giggles says:

Great exercise

Giggles says:

Fantastic day for it!

mandusa says:

Looks like a lot of fun.

Lee says:

how cool

Kenny Cummins says:

it fun

Bob says:

Fitness, the fun and the challenge.

Sandra says:

Go Dragon boats ,there a hoot !! World class fun , like reality show for the masses.

Jane says:


Patty says:


bgee says:

looks interesting

My905Hamilton says:

Isnt this where they are going to have the pan am races?

ratdog says:

very cool

parron says:

I really like this sport

parron says:

I am trying to join to their club

parron says:

It is fun

parron says:

it keeps the body in shape

parron says:

let’s get exercise

parron says:

it brings health

parron says:

it brings happiness

parron says:

it keeps the body busy

parron says:

it keeps the mind busy

parron says:

it keeps us young

parron says:

it is a dynamic sport

parron says:

if you want to have a good time , join the club

parron says:

it makes us very sociable person

parron says:

meeting different people and at the same time having a good time

parron says:

you know what, anyone can do it, it is not hard

bgee says:

I would like to take pert in that sport

dar w says:

Great exercise!!

zsazsa says:

Dragon boat racing is hard work!

Jane says:


cpintoronto says:

That’s very inspirational

taylar says:

it looks like a lot of fun

ariadne89 says:


Linda says:

Interesting things like this should be advertised more so people know about them.

winkdickerson says:


Armand says:

dragon boat racing….what a good healing sport

Donna says:

it is a beautiful venue

dar w says:

Way to go ! Any outdoor activities are great!Enjoy the summer!!

bgee says:

It would keep you in shape

xjaysfan says:


Laura Willet says:

I did Dragonboat racing once. It’s not easy

ErikaR says:

A friend of mine joined a Dragon Boat team at the age of 55 – in Nanaimo, B.C. Great fun and good camaraderie.

Jerry says:

great for exercise and getting to know people





betty says:

hard workout

betty says:

good for Directo

Lisa says:

Great way to stay in shape. Good luck to all teams in the race.

Carol-Anne says:

looks like a lot of fun

Adara says:

It’s great to have a sport like this that is accessible to both athletes and non-athletes.

Lee says:


Clark says:

everybody needs to be in sync.

Lee says:

looks like a good workout

jpd says:

Great venue

jpd says:

A must see event

Robert says:

They are so cool.

Eva says:

something i have always wanted to try

Lee says:

That’s a lot of people at this event!

Hanne says:

would of loved to of seen that

Angela says:

Sign me up

Ann says:

sounds like a fun day!

dar w says:

Let’s get ready for the Pan Am games!!!

bobcat says:

Great for the body and soul

N o e l says:

not to be left out in events like this

Roger says:

Row Row Row your boat

winkdickerson says:


zsazsa says:

Back is in spasms just thinking about it

John Marshall says:

Great for building strong teams and age is not a factor. Cool

rosemaries44 says:

great exercise and fun too!

mtlmajik says:

Age is a number and should not be an excuse.

Bob says:

Great team work. Looks like the teams had fun

taylar says:

It is all for fun

Countrylady says:

Enjoy it is a team effort, plus fantastic members stating good sportsmanship nice to hear that comment