Preston Dragons are a racing club, and as a full member of the British Dragon Boat Association we take part in several competitive events throughout the season to gain points in the BDA National League tables.
National League events take place across the country in places such as Liverpool, Stockton, Nottingham, Worcester, Exeter, Milton Keynes, Bristol and London, ending with the BDA National Finals which takes place over two days, normally the 3rd weekend in September.
There are different categories of race – Open for 20 paddlers (either male or female) and mixed (10 men/10 women) with a helm and drummer. There are also Ladies (usually 14 paddlers) and Junior (under 18) races. Races are over a variety of distances – 200m, 350m, 500m, 2000m, 2800m and 3000m.
Race events are a real spectacle with multiple crews fighting hard to win each race and secure the best times to qualify for the major final. Aside from the all-important league points, a variety of silverware is always on offer for the victors of each race category so the stakes are high!
As well as the BDA events, there are opportunities to travel abroad to compete at club and even Team GB level for those with the required commitment, dedication and skill!