By: Karishma, Clara & Sally
After the postponement of Point Wolstoncroft due to weather conditions, the Sydney International Regatta Centre hosted the first race of the season and a first time together for many as the DSA Women Race Crew. With many new recruits, returned veterans and everything in between - Comrades in arms, or perhaps more fitting - Comrades with Paddles!
Despite our variety of shapes and sizes, we were united by the desire to back ourselves and each other. Between Janine, our head stroke, Sabrina, our captain in the engine room and Kathryn, our tail sweep, we had the whole dragon boat covered.
As the boats lined up for Heat 1, each one of us taking a moment to revise the race plan in our head and looking straight at the finish line. We fought hard to maintain focus as the winds pushed us around as we tried to line-up correctly. "Paddlers are you ready?!" Just like that the moment arrives and our boat takes off in the flurry of paddle splash. The only thing visible is the paddle in front, locked in a surreal 143 seconds, as one tuned into a collective sense of timing and power coursing through the individual paddle. All of the sudden we hear "let it run" and while catching our breath we look up to realise in that single golden moment, we've won the race! This new women crew that had never trained together in a boat had suddenly caught a whiff of a shot, and we captured it.
A spontaneous cheer went through the crew! The DSA Women Crew went on to win Bronze in the finals and we wrapped up the day with a single thought that is summed up best with Chani’s closing dialogue from Dune - “This is only the beginning”!