While the physical benefits of the work we do in our weekly practices and the friendships we develop are rewarding enough, we are very proud to be recognized for our efforts as a team. Blazing Paddles has received many awards and honors throughout the years and we continue to strive to improve our performance. These are some of the successes we are proud to share with you:
Suncoast DB Festival (Sarasota, FL) 16 Wenches and 10 Seadogs participated at the Suncoast DB Festival in Sarasota last March 19.Highlights: 1. Blazing Paddles Wenches was on the first heat of the day, and we placed 2nd on the 1000 meters! Our time 5:02.65 2. After the 1000 meters for the Mixed Division, the storm gods decided to visit the venue and the competition was placed on hold for at least 3 hours. 3. Once the Suncoast Dragon Boat Festival resumed, the Wenches did a 500 meters and took the 3rd place which is the tie breaker for the series. Wenches time was 2:28.47, and the 2nd place was 2:26.13. So close!!! 4. Blazing Paddles mixed did a 500 meters and the 200 meters. BP placed 3rd on the 200 meters with a time of 00:54.49! 5. SOS Palm Beach joined Heart and Souls Sisters and they got GOLD for the BCS Division at the inaugural Suncoast DB Festival! Final Results for the 2016 Suncoast International Dragon Boat Festival Island City Canoe Relay Race (Wilton Manors) Blazing Paddles has secured the Coed Division Championship since the race’s creation in 2001, 15 times. Our coed team was the overall winner (beating the men’s teams) in 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2015. Our women’s crew has entered their division twice, taking first place on both occasions.
MR340 (Missouri) Known at the time as ‘Beauties ‘n’ Barnacles,’ and with many crew members from places other than Florida, the team completed the MR340, a 340-mile, nonstop race down the Missouri River. In 2010 they set a world record for a dragon boat and placed 3rd overall in a field of more than 200 boats, beating some of the best ultra-marathon paddlers in the world. Along the way they raised funds and awareness for the Shriner’s Hospital in St. Louis, which treats children – free of charge – by virtue of private donations. Blazing Paddles Captain “Iron” Will Murphy and Boatswain Ryan Mason steered and paddled in the effort. The team successfully defended their divisional title in 2013, despite being pinned to a wing dike in fog and darkness for two hours, and losing a teammate to medical disqualification. To learn more about this race click here for the MR340 blog postings.
Int’l Dragon Boat Federation Community Division World Championship, Virginia Key, FL In 2009 Blazing Paddles won the International Dragon Boat Federation (IDBF) Community Division World Championship.
Miami Winter Nationals and Florida Winter Nationals Members of Blazing Paddles placed first in the inaugural Miami Winternationals in 2012, setting a record upon completing the 60-mile expedition course. They came back and placed first in Outrigger Division, second overall in the 100-mile expedition course in 2013. In 2015 they entered the 60 mile Urban Expedition of the Florida Winter Nationals and shattered the course record en route to their overall win and in 2016, they not only defended their championship title but succeeded in smashing their 2015 record!
Miami Paddle Challenge Our blended team won third place for the 12-mile Miami Paddle Challenge benefiting Cystic Fibrosis in 2011. Blazing Paddles was the only dragon boat in a sea of outrigger canoes, kayaks, and SUPs. The boat was considered a slow, lumbering vessel. As the underdog, we are particularly proud of the accomplishment.