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 natasha.young@champnews.com
Monday, 05 September 2011 (3018357)
Gold for dragon team
by Natasha Young


***CAPTIONS: 1044782 - Members of the successful Great Britain Dragon Boat Under-18 Squad, Alex Wood, Tom Millington, Lisa Roberts and Sam Thompson.

1044783 - Members of the successful Great Britain Dragon Boat Under-18 Squad, Lisa Roberts, Sam Thompson, Alex Wood and Tom Millington. ***





EIGHT young athletes from Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre struck gold at the World Dragon Boat Championships in the USA.

The teenagers from across Merseyside, who train at the Crosby facility, recently jetted off to Tampa Bay in Florida for the prestigious event, and competed against 25 other countries as part of the Great Britain Under-18 squad.

The group, including 13-year-old Alex Wood from Waterloo along with Sam Thompson, 13, Lisa Roberts, 17, Thomas Millington, 15, Jessica Wright, 17, Hatty Rainford, 16, Paul Healy, 13, and James Williams, 15, even beat off competition from favourites Germany and Canada, where dragon boating is often taught at school from an early age.

It marks an incredible achievement for the group - as some only took up the sport after Crosby Lakeside opened in 2009.

The World Dragon Boat Racing Championships is the premier event in a growing sport that finds its roots in ancient China.

Unlike rowing with long oars, dragon boat teams of 20 or more use shorter, canoe-like paddles and row to a thumping drum beat in a boat normally decorated like a dragon.

Councillor Mike Booth, Sefton Council's cabinet member for leisure and tourism, said: “What a great achievement by these young people to travel across the world and excel against other athletes in a fantastic team sport.

”We are very proud of their achievements and hope they can inspire other young people to take up dragon boating - or other sporting activities - as we count down to the London 2012 Olympics.“

For more information about Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre, visit www.crosbylakeside.co.uk or call 0151 966 6868






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