KUCHING: This year’s Sarawak Regatta will feature a Dragon Boat Exhibition Race with participation from Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and Brunei.
Minister of Tourism Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said the inaugural race on Sept 7-8 will serve as an introduction of the international sport.
“If there is a good response, we will likely introduce the Dragon Boat Race as part of the Sarawak Regatta next year,” he told a press conference yesterday.
Abg Johari said the iconic Raja Sungai category’s grand prize has been increased to RM10,000.
“Previously, the grand prize was only RM3,000 but we have decided to increase it to RM10,000 to bring the regatta to international standards and to attract more international participants.”
Abg Johari said that an exciting array of programmes and activities have been lined up for the regatta 2013, which will run from Sept 6-8 at the Kuching Waterfront.
“Among the programmes are Malaysia Craft Promotion 2013 where 72 craft entrepreneurs from Sarawak, Melaka, Selangor and Kelantan will be showcasing their handicrafts from Aug 30 to Sept 8 as well as the SDSI (Satu Daerah Satu Industri) Showcase, Food Festival and 1Malaysia Cultural Showcase from Sept 6 to 8.”
The showcase will see participants from all over the country converge on the Kuching Waterfront to showcase food from the respective states.”
Other events are Pentarama Regatta Sarawak, Brooke Swim and Water Sports, Gold Regatta, Suara Emas 50th Year, and Gendang Melayu Festival.
This year’s regatta has attracted 347 entries comprising 6,300 paddlers.
Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud will officiate at the event on Sept 7 at 10am, while Head of State Tun Datuk Patinggi Abang Muhammad Salahuddin Abang Barieng is scheduled to close the event on Sept 8 at 2.30pm.