Host RI aims high at world c’ships

26, Nov 2015 | Author: Embassy of Indonesia

Source  :  The Jakarta Post

 

The competition is set to run from Nov. 29 to Dec. 8.

“I have been a judge at the WRC seven times, and I’ve always dreamed of witnessing Indonesia become the winner. [Hosting the event] is simply the best opportunity to reach that dream,” said WRC race director Amalia Yunita.

“I think we’ve got a big chance to win because our rafters definitely know the Citarik well,” the Indonesian women’s division senior rafter added.

The upcoming WRC is in the Rafting 6 (R6) category, with six rafters per boat.

As many as 650 rafters in men’s and women’s divisions from 24 countries — including Brazil and Costa Rica — are listed in 73 groups.

The championship is divided into open, master (above 40 years old), under-19 and under-23 classes. As in events, the championship offers sprints (300 meters), head-to-head (eight to 12 kilometers) and slalom.

Each participating country is only allowed to deploy one group for every event.

Indonesia will be represented by 49 rafters in seven groups across all events apart from the master class in the women’s division.

Indonesia’s senior men’s team captain Abu Hanifah said that he was keeping his head down, despite the privilege of representing the host country.

“It is fact that we’re benefited by knowing the stream very well, but we still have to do it 100 percent. We don’t want to be burdened by the target of winning. Nevertheless, we are ready to race and I hope my rafters will enjoy it,” said Abu, 31.

He added that Brazil and Japan were among the toughest participants in the event. “Most Japanese athletes […] are tall. Their rowing skills are really good.”

Sixteen-year-old Nita Karlina, who will race in the under-19s, said she was proud to be able to take part in the event.

“I started to raft a year ago, but now I’ve got the opportunity to represent my country in a world championship. It is an honor,” said Nita, adding that she would keep an eye out for dangerous Brazilian participants on the Citarik.

Tourism Minister Arief Yahya said the government would support such championships, which he said were expected to promote tourist sites in Indonesian.

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