For those new to dragon boating, it is a team building event that is quick to pick up, progressive in nature and ideal for both experienced crews and novices alike. It is one of the reasons why so may people who watch those Racing The Dragon, realise that it is one of those events ... that is just far too much fun to simply watch!
A dragon boat team is made up of between 13 - 20 team members, although a maximum sixteen paddlers and a drummer will be allowed to compete in any one race. The extra members are because each team will have several races during the day. if you are a small team and down on numbers, the drummer (even another paddler) can always be borrowed from another team.
Racing is over the whole length of Ontario Dock, which is around 180 meters and each team will have a minimum three timed races where their single fastest time only will count for Grand Final qualification. What this means is, even if two of your races are both disasters, one great time is still all you need to be in with a good chance of going through to the Grand Final race.
Before each team's first race, teams will be given a safety briefing and also instruction on the technique used. One person paddling a canoe - simple. Up to sixteen people paddling a dragon boat together ... not so simple.