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Rosas del Plata, Tigre Paddlers

Rosas del Plata, Tigre paddlers journey to Bariloche to compete in the women's division.

The New Zealand BCS 2023 Festival is coming soon! And we are very excited with the final countdown (a little under one year and we will fly to another continent, to meet other Pink Paddler mates from all around the world).

In the meantime, we are training hard and we try to participate in as many Argentinian Dragon Boat races as possible. There are few opportunities here because the Dragon Boat sport is fairly new in Argentina (in 2016 the first Dragon Boats arrived to our country).

But the Dragon Boat Argentina Association (AABD) this year wants to boost the Dragon Boats events all over the country to commemorate the 50 years of business relationships between China and Argentina. Bingo! And that’s why in 2022 we will be able to Dragon Boat non stop.

The first opportunity of this year was a Dragon Boat Festival in Bariloche, a beautiful city in Rio Negro’s province, in the south of Argentina. Bariloche is compared to Switzerland because of its landscapes (many incredible lakes and mountains). If you have the chance to travel to Argentina, I highly recommend you to visit Bariloche, no doubt.

So, the festival took place on the 11, 12 and 13 of March. The weather was sunny and the lake where we paddled was very calm, with transparent cold water. An ideal stage for our performances.

Many dragon boat teams came from Buenos Aires and also from other provinces from the south of Argentina.

There was not a BCS category in the festival, so we competed in the female category (with many other much younger women, with no breast cancer history). A big challenge. That encouraged us and made us stronger.

We decided to participate in both categories: 200 meters and 500 meters.

Because of the Corona virus protocols, the teams were reduced to 10 paddlers each (in 20 paddler boats).

We also had another big challenge: to integrate three paddlers from other teams in the same boat, because Rosas del Plata (my team) had only seven paddlers who could travel to Bariloche. And we completed the boat with three guests’ paddlers that we barely knew.

On Friday the 11th. we had only one hour of practice for each team. And the integration was a success. It felt as if we had always paddled together!

On Saturday the 12th we had the first races for the classification. We competed in two 200-meter races and in one 500-meter race.

The four better times were classified, and we were between them. What a wonderful sensation! It was a mix of nerves, joy, adrenalin, pride and gratitude for each member of the team that made such a big effort. Yes, we can.

On Sunday the 13th, we had the final races. They were very challenging ones.

Finally, we won the third place in 200 meters and the second place in 500 meters.

And we brought a shiny cup home to Buenos Aires!

The closing ceremony of the festival was very moving. All the teams together, as a big family that loves dragon boat sport. A family that grows every year, as new teams appear.

The experience was totally positive and now we are eagerly waiting for the next race 😊

I want to mention and to thank each of the extraordinary paddlers in our team in Bariloche that contributed for making things easier. They are: Adriana Loggio, Claudia Gorza, Cynthia Lizzi, Eliana Fernandez, Erica Santos, Leticia Miranda, Monica Kobrinsky, Norma Pombo and Romina Lopez.

Regards from,

Jessica Trumper (vice-captain of Rosas del Plata)