Three young members of the Manning River Dragon Boat Club have reached the top level
of their sport, being selected to represent their country in the Australian Dragon Boat
Team, The Aurora’s. Alistair Adamson, Sean Page and Jade Page will travel to China in
August next year to represent Australia at the International Dragon Boat Federation World
Championships, with Alistair and Sean in the Under 18s crews and Jade in the Under 16s
crews. Their families and club are extremely proud, with their selection being testament
to their work ethic and dedication to their sport.
Their success comes following an intensive selection camp at the AIS over the October long
weekend. To reach this level, junior paddlers from across Australia had to undergo fitness
testing, with the best from each state being selected to attend the camp. There they had
a full schedule of fitness testing, assessment of individual techniques, and paddling in
crews with others competing for selection to assess their ability to come together as a
team. The weekend in Canberra was wet and extremely cold paddling on Lake Burley
Griffin, adding another challenge to the selection process. In preparation for the camp,
Alistair, Sean and Jade travelled to Sydney for coaching with Australian Under 16s coach,
Mary Weaver. Mary was very impressed and reported that the Manning juniors performed
particularly strongly during the selection camp.
For Sean, this is his second time in The Aurora’s having been part of the gold medal
winning Under16s team at the previous World Championships in Canada in 2015, whilst
Alistair has been successful in the NSW junior state team winning gold at the past two
Australian Championships. At just 12, Jade is the youngest member of the Under 16s crew
but has already made a strong impression, edging out older paddlers in the selection
process. They now start an even more rigorous fitness and paddling program as well as
travelling regularly to Sydney, Brisbane and Canberra for training over the next year with
the hope of bringing back gold from China.
While the Manning club is excited by this news it has come at a very sad time with the
passing of a much loved member, Gaye Mac Donald. Gaye was one of the inaugural
members of the club, very supportive of the club and a great ambassador for the sport.
Paddlers travelled from Nambucca, Port ,Macquarie, Camden Haven and Great Lakes to
pay respect at the funeral last week. During recent training sessions a memorial paddle
was undertaken to pay respect to a much loved paddler.