2024 “Sichuan-Chongqing-Shaanxi” Dragon Boat Invitational Tournament and “Rowing across Sichuan” Tongchuan Station to Begin

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The dragon soars in Dazhou, exuding a majestic presence, while competitors paddle fiercely, striving for glory and racing towards victory. With the rhythmic drum beats and teams’ resounding chants, dragon boat masters strive to be the first, their boats shooting like arrows, cutting through the waves and heading towards the finish line. On May 28-29, the 2024 “Sichuan-Chongqing-Shaanxi” Dragon Boat Invitational Tournament and “Rowing across Sichuan” Tongchuan Station, sponsored by the Dazhou Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China and the Dazhou Municipal People’s Government, staged an exhilarating water sports feast of passion and speed on the Tatuo section of Zhouhe River.

A thousand boats competing, dragon boats racing once again showcasing their might

The two-day race kicked off amidst the cheers from the on-site audience and the slogans of the dragon boat masters. It is reported that this dragon boat race has set up two events: the 200-meter straight race and the 500-meter straight race, including 16 teams in the national open category and 17 local teams, with a total of more than 620 participants.

After two days of fierce competition, Fuzhou Changle Huiquan Dragon Boat team finally won the championship in the 200m category with an impressive result of 40.08 seconds, Guangzhou Xiangying Dragon Boat team won the runner-up by a narrow margin, and Shunde Daliang Damen Dragon Boat team won the second runner-up. In the local group, the Tongchuan Dragon Boat team, Xuanhan Dragon Boat team and Sichuan University of Arts and Science Dragon Boat team took the first, second, and third positions respectively. The Fuzhou Changle Huiquan Dragon Boat team maintained their dominance by clinching the championship in the 500m straight race, followed closely by Guangzhou Xiangying Dragon Boat team and Shunde Daliang Damen Dragon Boat team as the runner-up and second runner-up respectively. The championship in the 500m open group straight race was claimed by Quxian County Dragon Boat team, with the Sichuan University of Arts and Science Dragon Boat team and Xuanhan Dragon Boat team securing the runner-up and second runner-up positions respectively. In the end, the Fuzhou Changle Huiquan Dragon Boat team won the first place in the open group by an absolute advantage. The Sichuan University of Arts and Science Dragon Boat team claimed the top position in the local group with their overall performances.

“The river is incredibly beautiful, and the water acrobatics show of the opening ceremony and the determined figures of the competitors rowing forward have presented us with a visual feast,” said a relevant person in charge of the Sichuan Dragon Boat Association when commenting on the spectator experience of the competition. This is the return of the dragon boat race in the main urban area of Dazhou after a lapse of more than a decade. Dazhou has provided a satisfactory answer to dragon boat enthusiasts in terms of event organization, competition execution and reception services.

Striving ahead with oars and paddles, the hometown of the Ba people accelerates forward

Unfolding the map of Dazhou, the dragon boat race breaks through the venue restrictions, taking the Tatuo section of the Zhouhe River as the center, extensively connecting multiple scenic spots such as the Longzhao Tower, Ba Mountain Spirit Sculpture, Tatuo Wetland Park, and the Jinnan Bridge. Using dragon boat culture as the medium, it allows citizens and tourists to gain a comprehensive understanding of Dazhou while enjoying the race.

The competition was captivating and diverse, complemented by a range of cultural and tourism activities. During the event, Dazhou not only prepared special gifts for competitors, but also launched a series of cultural, sports and commercial activities, including the release of millions of tickets and the promotion of boutique tourist routes, allowing competitors, citizens, and tourists to enjoy the competition and explore the city of Dazhou. Undoubtedly, this serves as one of the important scenes to display the city brand of “Ba-style Charm and Ink-Washed Dazhou”.

In recent years, Dazhou has always adhered to the development concept of “Lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets”, fully leveraging its ecological resource advantages, and exploring the path of integrated development of cultural, sports and tourism. As a result, the industries of ecology, tourism, and sports have shown a growing trend of prosperity. On the one hand, with the successful hosting of more than 50 national and provincial-level large-scale sports events such as the Dazhou Ba People’s Hometown Marathon, the National Women’s Hockey Championship, and the China Gateball Championship Finals, sports events have gradually become an important means for Dazhou to promote social and economic development. On the other hand, the hosting of events has an obvious supportive effect on both urban construction and environmental improvement. It has contributed to enhancing the happiness and satisfaction of the residents.

Nowadays, strolling through the streets of Dazhou, the river smoothly flows and the willows are green. The willows are neatly arranged along the riverbanks, while the greenery on the embankments thrives, with tall and straight trees. The urban space is becoming increasingly open, revealing a beautiful skyline. Every step reveals a scene that exemplifies the improvement in urban quality. By the Lotus Lake and waterfront park, citizens gather to exercise and jog, creating an increasingly strong sports atmosphere.

Against torrents and waves, Ink-Washed Dazhou sets sail

“This is my first time watching a dragon boat race in the main urban area of Dazhou, and it’s so exciting!” exclaimed 15-year-old Xiao Huang while watching the dragon boat race. According to reports, the 2024 “Sichuan-Chongqing-Shaanxi” Dragon Boat Invitational Tournament and “Rowing across Sichuan” Tongchuan Station marks the re-launch of dragon boat races in the main urban area of Dazhou after more than a decade. For Dazhou citizens of the same age as Xiao Huang, the dragon boat race may be unfamiliar to them, but the impact it brings is deeply profound. Xiao Huang said that he has arranged with his classmates to enroll in swimming classes after the competition, hoping to become a member of the dragon boat team in the future.

For Dazhou, restarting the dragon boat race is not only an important moment to promote the national fitness craze, but also a practical attempt to lay the groundwork for the integrated development of culture, sports, and tourism industries in the future. Currently, following sports events to travel has gradually become a trend, and hosting sports competitions has become an important measure for many places to attract popularity and gather traffic. Dazhou, which boasts natural masterpieces like the “Heavenly Wonderland” Bashan Grand Canyon and the “Top of Sichuan and Chongqing” Batai Peaks, as well as the Luojiaba Ba culture site, which is comparable to the Sanxingdui site, and the profound red revolutionary heritage, is also well versed in this way.

Of course, hosting a large-scale event is not easy, as it not only tests the comprehensive strength of a city, but also requires the dual efforts of the city managers and the event. In order to achieve this, Dazhou has demonstrated the sincerity of a city, offering high-quality, efficient, enthusiastic, and thoughtful services to turn the dragon boat race into a high-quality event that enriches people’s sports life. This not only brings tangible urban warmth, but also continuously releases the future development dividends of this historic city.

“The purpose of this competition is to gather dragon boat enthusiasts from home and abroad in Dazhou through dragon boat. It is a combination of sports, culture, and tourism, as well as a deep integration of dragon boat spirit with Dazhou Ba culture and Red culture.” The relevant person in charge of Dazhou Municipal Bureau of Culture, Sports, and Tourism stated that after the 2024 “Sichuan-Chongqing-Shaanxi” Dragon Boat Invitational Tournament and “Rowing across Sichuan” Tongchuan Station event, more events will be held in various parts of Dazhou, continuously popularizing the city brand of “Red Dazhou, the Hometown of Ba people, and the Capital of Gas in China”.

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