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Defeats Navy Fire Department in commemorative event
THE waters just off the shores of Matapang Beach Park were filled with paddling teams representing the different first responder organizations to include the Guam Police Department, Guam Fire Department, Guam National Guard, Andersen Fire Department, Naval Fire Department, Haggan Outrigger Canoe Club, and a visiting forces team Navy Tag Five.
Participants made their way to take part in the 2nd Annual 9/11 Commemorative Dragon Boat Race. Pa’a Taotao Tano’ opened the event with a “bendishon” along with the glaring sirens that commemorated the lives of the heroes, victims and their family from the Sept. 11, 2001 tragedy.
While enjoying a day of camaraderie among each other, the competition in the waters provided family, friends and paddling fans with some excitement. When it was all set and done, it was the Guam Police Department that garnered the top spot after beating out the Navy Fire Department.
The first round opened with Haggan Outrigger Canoe Club and Guam National Guard winning their respective heats to advance to the semifinal round with the remaining teams vying for their entry into the next round. After two rounds of competition, GPD, GFD, Navy and Andersen Fire Departments all advanced to the semifinals.
In a closely contested semifinal round, Guam Police Department and Navy Fire Department clocked in with the two best times. GPD’s official time of 2:12.64 edged out Navy Fire Department by less than one second, while Haggan (2:13.34) and Guam National Guard purged Guam Fire Department by .57 of a second to qualify for the consolation round. Haggan’s time of 2:07.19 registered the fastest time of the competition as they cruised to victory over the National Guard 2:16.41 in the consolation round to claim third place.
In the championship heat, Guam Police Department and Navy Fire Department raced to an even start through 150 meters. However, GPD’s dragon boat drummed to a faster beat as they moved ahead of the Navy team, eventually crossing the finish line two seconds ahead. GPD clocked in with a time of 2:15.06 to Navy’s 2:17.45 to claim the title.
Ron Ruiz and Paul Tapao through the host Haggan Outrigger Canoe Club and Guam Dragon Boat Federation organized the commemorative event.
The organizers would like to send a special thank you to the sponsors of the race: Calvo’s Insurance, Moylan’s Insurance, Docomo Pacific, Hawaiian Rock Products, Tan Holdings Corporation, Tan Siu Lin Foundation, Guam Chinese Association, MidPac Far East, KwikSPACE, Goodwind Development, Triple J Enterprises, Unity Development Corporation, and McDonald’s Restaurants.