2011 Rio Tinto Alcan Dragon Boat Festival
Tomorrow the Anniemaniacs are racing in downtown Portland for the Portland Dragonboat race! As of today, this is my second favorite race, with the Alcan race being my new favorite. After the Tacoma race, the Maniacs headed up to Vancouver, BC for the Rio Tinto Alcan Dragon Boat Festival. I think race directors have been reading my blog because they moved the paddlers village closer to the race site, and didn’t have us shuttled through the vendors. Instead of having everyone crowd by the Science museum to watch, we were all able to watch along the banks behind where the food vendors and merchants were located. (Steering wise, the finish line signs were a bit useless so the best way to steer was following the colored buoys. Note: colorblind tillers may have problems.)
With the changes to the location of the paddlers village and the vendors, Alcan is my new favorite race. The city is great to visit, and the food is good (Friday night we went on a food crawl and I tried to eat fried chicken wherever I went). The competition is tight and numerous, where this year nearly 180 teams attended. The people running the race are organized (and calm, much love to Madame Racestarter). Lining up eight boats at the start is SO FUN, I love it. The boats are small and light and weird to control, but we do well in them. In the end, the Anniemaniacs raced strong and got 3rd place in Competitive B, placing 11th out of 100 mixed teams!