No fewer than 13 States and the FCT are taking part in the 2022 annual Admiral Porbeni National Boat Race.
The colourful event taking place at the Jabi lake is being supervised by officials from the International Canoe Federation (ICF).
Rear Admiral Festus Porbeni (Rtd.
), organiser of the competition, said the boat race which started on Wednesday, aimed at “catching them young” at the grassroots.
Porbeni who is also the President, Nigeria Rowing Canoe and Sailing Federation said that “the competition was part of efforts to propagate the three water sports of rowing, canoe and Sailing in Nigeria.
“The Admiral Porbeni National Boat Race is essentially a talent hunt and discovery competition aimed at ‘catching them young’.
“We’ll also nurture them to stardom and prominence by preparing and exposing them to international competitions,” he said.
Porbeni said the competition which is in its eight edition has helped unveil and nurture so many talents who are now competing for the national teams and winning medals.
“I am pleased to inform you that the African record older in the 200m canoeing event, Ayomide Bello broke her own Africa Games record of 50.
00 secs in the 200m event at the Morocco Africa Games held in 2019.
“When she returned faster time of 42.
90 secs in the same event at the 2021 Admiral Porbeni National Boat Race,” he explained.
Porbeni consequently called on corporate bodies and well meaning Nigerians to support the Federation in hosting more of these competitions and getting latest canoes and rowing equipment for athletes.
About 131 Athletes from states including Ondo, Kogi, Rivers, Delta, Borno, Bayelsa, Oyo, Kaduna, Kwara, Bauchi, Niger, Cross River and FCT are competing in 15 events at the competition.
Gold medalist are set to go home with N100,000, Silver 70,000 and Bronze 50,000 in the three-day competition.
13 States, FCT participating in 2022 Porbeni boat race