By Trudy Allen
Niña Andrade and Aidelyn Lustre competed with the National Dragon Boat Team in the recent 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.
The Dragon Boat races took place on the 7th and 8th of December 2019, at Malawaan Park, Subic, having been rescheduled, from the earlier competition dates, to allow Typhoon “Tisoy” to pass through.
Both ladies secured a Bronze Medal in the following races:
200m Mixed Standard Boat TBR (Traditional Boat Race)
500m Mixed Standard Boat TBR.
Niña (29-years-old) and Ai (33-years-old) have been members of Boracay Dragonflies & Dragonforce Dragon Boat Teams since 2015. They were successful in try-outs and invited to join, the Philippine Canoe Kayak Dragonboat Federation Women’s Team in 2018.
The Boracay Dragonflies are no strangers to invitations from the National Team to compete for the Philippines. To date, six women have tried out and received invitations to join the National Team: Cristine Montuya, Richel Montuya (who died in the Dragon Boat tragedy 25 Sept 2019), Shiela Mae Espinosa and Michelle Sampane.
Whilst all were honored and proud to have been selected, only Niña and Ai were in a position to take up the offer as it involves moving to Manila and training full time.
Ai and Niña were especially proud to wear the Philippine SEA Games Opening Ceremony outfits, designed by Francis Libiran, which drew inspiration from the Philippines traditional Barong Tagalog.
Each received the Order of Lapu Lapu Medal of Honor from President Rodrigo Duterte at Malacañang Palace on December 18, 2019 alongside other medaled athletes from the Games.