New announcement. Learn more


President's Report

Greetings from a warm autumn day in Christchurch New Zealand. We are lucky that the weather is still holding and that dragon boat paddlers are still able to get out on the water in the sunshine. I had a wonderful day with coaching two crews on Saturday morning. The temperature was 3c at the start but by the time the second session had finished we were paddling in warm sunshine. My greatest delight is to be on the water, whether paddling or coaching.

I am aware that as our season in the southern hemisphere draws to a close that in other parts of the world the dragon boat season will be starting to get into full swing now as you head into your spring then the summer months.

I was privileged to be able to attend the SportAccord summit in Birmingham, UK at the invitation of the Claudio Schermi, President of IDBF. There were so many learnings at this summit particularly around safeguarding, integrity, health & safety, and how we grow our sports. I had the privilege of meeting Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Raffaele Chiulli, President Association of IOC Recognised International Sports Federations (ARISF). These two gentlemen would be the most influential people in all Olympic recognised sports today. You can read a further report about the summit in this newsletter.

I was lucky to be able to have a few days to myself after the summit and took the opportunity as the season was perfect to be able to visit the Keukenhof gardens in Amsterdam. Who would have thought that there are over 3000 varieties of tulips. The pinks were especially amazing. I did get delayed getting home due to cancelled (x 2) flights due to the flooding in Dubai, but eventually managed to get home via China. The joys of travel these days. I noted that even though there was still serious flooding in Dubal that did not stop the Middle East/North African Dragon Boat Champions from being held. Us dragon boaters are clearly made of stern stuff.

It is also extremely exciting for us to be able to see that one of our member teams will be carrying the Olympic flame as part of its journey to the Olympic site in Paris. You can read further about this in this newsletter.

There are many events on the calendar in the coming months across Latin and South America, Europe, and the Americas in general. I have always said that if you are paddling you could pretty much go anywhere in the world on any day of the week and be able to hop into a boat for a paddle and that certainly seems to be holding true for people who are travelling around the globe and popping up in pictures anywhere and everywhere as part of a crew.

I want to wish you all the best for your paddling season and for those of you on a winter break enjoy that downtime, but make sure you stay fit for the start of the coming season.

Yours in paddling

Best regards,