GAINESVILLE, Georgia – The Philippines claimed two more gold medals in the 2018 ICF World Dragon Boat Championship in Georgia, after winning the 10-seater and 20-seater senior mixed 200-meter races at the Lake Lanier Olympic Park.
Led by veteran paddlers Hermie Macaranas and Mark Jhon Frias, the Filipinos sprinted to the finish with a sudden burst of speed in the final 50 meters, to finish with a time of 50.46 seconds in the small boat.
France settled for the silver medal in 53.056 seconds, followed by third-placer Hungary (53.158), host United States (53.463), Italy (53.9) and Germany (54.437).
"On a shorter course such as the 200-meters, you need to produce faster and powerful strokes to become successful," said coach Diomedes Manalo after the Philippine Canoe Kayak Dragonboat Federation paddlers surpassed their medal tally in the 2016 edition of the event in Moscow.
The Philippine team followed the game plan exactly in capturing their fourth gold in the big boat, clocking in at 43.481 seconds to subdue Czech Republic (46.082) and the US (46.146).
Hungary placed fourth (46.791) followed by Germany (48.040) and Canada (50.242).
The Philippines had four gold medals in the event, along with two silvers in the senior men's 500-meters and the big boat senior mixed 2000-meters.
"Congratulations to our dragon boat athletes for improving on their medal tally from their last world championship," said Go for Gold top honcho Jeremy Go, whose company supported the squad along with the Philippine Sports Commission.
"Despite all the struggle and adversity, our team has come out on top and continues to impress."
They defended the 20-seater senior mixed 500-m title with aplomb after kicking off their world championship campaign with a convincing win in the 10-seater senior mixed 500-m event.
The Pinoy paddlers can win another gold medal in the 10-seater senior men 200-m on Sunday (Monday in Manila).
Jordan De Guia, John Paul Selencio, Lee Robin Santos, Jonathan Ruz, Daniel Ortega, Reymart Nevado, John Lester Delos Santos will join hands with Christine Mae Talledo, Sharmaine Mangilit, Apple Jane Abitona, Raquel Almencion and Lealyn Baligasa in the big boat senior mixed 200-m.
Maribeth Caranto has been designated steersman and Patricia Ann Bustamante as drummer.
During their world championship campaign two years ago, the Filipinos brought home three gold medals, one silver and a pair of bronzes.
In the master division, the Philippines pocketed a pair of bronze medals in the small boat men’s and mixed 200-m races.