ORGANISERS.... Assistant Minister to the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment Pang Yuk Ming (centre) and Sabah Chinese Cultural Association representative Chow Tet Onn (2nd right) together with event organisers at the Sabah Tourism Board.
By : ELAINE MAH
A TOTAL of 76 teams will take part in the Sabah Dragon Boat Race on the 15th and 16th June 2013 at Likas Bay, Kota Kinabalu. This will be the 28th race at this location.
The Dragon Boat race is held every year as part of the annual Chinese Duanwu Festival, which falls on the fifth day of the fifth month in the Chinese lunar calendar. The Dragon Boat is a long wooden boat with a ferocious-looking dragon head in the front. Behind the dragon head is the drummer man who pounds the drum rythmically to help the team row in unision and keep their spirits up.
The Duanwu Festival is celebrated each year to honour Qu Yuan, the loyal Chinese Advisor who drowned himself upon hearing that his country had suffered defeat. The Duanwu Festival is also known as the Dumpling Festival.
In Sabah, the teams will compete in 200 metres and 800 metres races.
The Races are made even more special with the participation of Kinabalu Pink Ribbon, a non-governmental organization that raises awareness of breast cancer. To honour their participation, the event will feature a Breast Cancer Survivor Race. The winning proceeds will be donated to a charity organization of the winner’s choice.
The Sabah Dragon Boat Race also boasts international participation by teams from Australia, Singapore and Brunei.
Assistant Minister to the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment Datuk Pang Yuk Ming is confident that the organisers are well prepared for the race.
Sabah Chinese Cultural Association representative Datuk Chow Tet Onn expressed his gratitude for the encouraging participation in the upcoming Races.
“I am happy to see that even though the Dragon Boat race is largely a Chinese tradition, it has received support from all races in Sabah. This is a good sign for us,” he said. (Insight Sabah)