P2.6-M bonus for 6-gold dragon boat squadBy June Navarro
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The triumphant Philippine dragon boat team in the World Dragon Boat Championships in Milan will earn a total of P2.6 million for their exploits.
The Philippine Sports Commission yesterday approved the financial bonus that will reward members of the 26-man team P100,000 each from government.
Coached by Len Escollante, the Filipino paddlers topped the 14-country competition organized by the International Canoe Federation with a haul of six gold and one silver medals. They only failed to land a medal in the 500-meter mixed 20.
The Philippines capped the sensational performance with three golds in the Open category of the 200m events on Sunday. Russia placed second in all three races while the United States, Germany and Poland won a bronze each.
The team will be honored by the PSC during the agency’s meeting with leaders of 10 focus sports today at the Manila Yacht Club.
They are also scheduled to meet with President Aquino in Malacañang in the afternoon.
The Filipinos also ruled the 10 mixed 500m; the 10-man 2,000m and the 10-man 500m.
Another team of Filipino dragon boat paddlers ruled the 10th IDBF World Dragon Boat Championships in Florida last year.
That squad, which competed without enjoying recognition from the PSC and the Philippine Olympic Committee, won five golds, two silvers and one bronze.
The team, organized by the Philippine Dragon Boat Federation which contested the loss of its status as a national sports association (NSA) under the POC umbrella, was also received by President Aquino in Malacañang.
The POC said dragon boat racing comes under the national canoe-kayak federation.