'Pond Scum'
headed to Africa

Sheri Block
Friday, August 08, 2003


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REGINA'S own "Pond Scum" will represent Canada in an international dragon boat competition in South Africa next spring and the team couldn't be more excited.

The masters team, made up of athletes and professionals aged 40 and over from the Queen City, is one of only two Canadian teams to qualify for the International Dragon Boat Crew Club Championships in April 2004.

The other team is from Toronto.

Pond Scum secured their spot at the Calgary Western Canada Dragon Boat Festival last weekend with a finish time of 2:07.92 in the 500-metre race.

"We're pretty excited. We had a really good race in Calgary. It hasn't quite sunk in how far away South Africa is," said team co-captain Mary Anderson.The team has been together for 10 years and has been racing competitively for about seven. They train year-round with the Wascana Racing Canoe Club, which includes dry land training and pool paddling in the winter.

Anderson said the team is working on new ways to prepare for the competition.

"We always stay fit in the winter but having sport-specific weight training and the pool paddling and the running has been really important to keep race-ready all year round," she said.

"We've been training in the pool on planks across the pool. We're kneeling on those and we're going to try and set up an actual dragon boat within the pool so that it will be more exact to our racing."

Pond Scum competes in races across Western Canada and has won several awards, including gold at competitions in Edmonton, Calgary and Saskatoon. The team will compete at the Regina Dragon Boat Festival Aug. 30 on Wascana Lake.


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