Months of intensive training have paid off for the Merimbula Water Dragons after the team took out first place in the mixed race in the ACT on November 11.
Racing against 11 other teams from Canberra and Sydney, the mixed 20s team only managed a fifth place in heat 1 but upped their game to score a first place in heat 2 to take them into the final.
Merimbula's start wasn't great but the boat surged forward, despite the strong cross winds and water coming over the gunnels.
As sweep and head coach Gill McCallum realised they were a dragon's head in front, she shouted for the team to give everything, spurring them on above the cacophony of drummers and other sweeps calls.
The result was in a win in 51.85 seconds over the 200 metres. It was a breakthrough moment against strong teams.
The 200 metre races followed an early start with 2000 metre races which saw many of the Merimbula team backing up from one 2000 metre race to the next.
The women's 10s team came second in the 2000 metre race in a time of 14.04 minutes and the mixed 10s team came in third in a time of 13.46 minutes.
For Chris Hogno it was his first regatta and he said he was proud to be part of the first-placed mixed team.
Amanda Harris has a successful day upgrading her Level 2 sweeping qualification to Level 3 during racing at Canberra.
IN OTHER NEWS:
The upgraded qualification allows Amanda to sweep at all regattas including Australian Championships.
Next Merimbula heads to Albury for the Cross Border Championships on 16,17 November.
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