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Yearbook

9th Annual Long Beach - July 29, 30

Squad Division Place
 
Black Mixed I Final 6th (2:21:01)
Red Mixed IIB Final 3rd (2:24:48)
Men Open Final 5th (2:14:16)
Women Women B Finals 2nd (2:33:43)
LAPD Mixed IIID Finals 6th (2:58:14)
LAPD BCS Cup 3rd (2:56:83)

Team,

Last weekend was why I love dragon boating - what a fantastic tournament! Not only was the weather absolutely phenomenal, we came together and represented not only our team, but Los Angeles. I am sure I can speak for all of the coaches - we REALLY came together Sunday and paddled as a team. There was a HUGE difference in the quality of paddling from Saturday to Sunday. That difference was your focus and determination.

Let's face it, we are a marked team. From local teams that we practice with in Long Beach, to teams that come from out of town, a lot of teams want to try and kick a little LARD ass (or butt). In fact, there are teams that look to races with us as either the race that sends a team spiraling downward or the race that defines it as an upcoming team.

Even with this heavy burden, LARD performed beyond my expectations this weekend. We came together as a team and paddled with heart and focus. Did you know we were the only team from Los Angeles in Mixed I finals???? No other LA team was there, but we were. We competed against the top teams on the West Coast - teams that practice 4-5 times per week! Throughout the weekend, we competed against teams that were physically superior to us AND practiced more than us. It goes to show you what a little determination and desire can do...

Thank you all for your dedication, focus and effort this past weekend. It only gets better in SF!!!!!

Finally, I want to thank the "unsung" heroes of your team - the callers (Huay and the Cutter (Tiffany)) and the steerers (Leon, Matt and Wynne). There is NO way we could compete at this level without you. You are all world class at what you do. There were times in the races where I felt I had nothing more to give but heard Leon asking for just a little more - somehow, we were able to give it to him (maybe 110%?). We really appreciate the sacrifices you all make for LARD. Thank you.

I hope every single one of you can join us in SF in a few weeks...

Thank you again,

Scott



Paddler's Corner: Jessica Lee

It all started with a boy, two boys, actually. I've been a martial artist of various styles since 6th grade. My first year of college at UC Berkeley, I started wushu. That's where I met Richard. He was a little quirky but funny and fun to be around. As I progressed through college, we hung out less and less but were still friends.

One year I was in Jack London square for a wushu demonstration. Turns out the demonstration was for a dragon boat festival. This was the first time I had even heard of the sport (I thought). I was surprised at the number of people there but not really with the sport itself. I couldn't tell the boats apart! I could barely see them racing out on the water. Well, as it turns out, I saw Richard there that day. He was racing with Absolute Dragons. They were an interesting group of people. Definately liked to have fun.

I graduated and moved back in with my parents while I looked for a job. I had a lot of free time and for once had no martial arts to keep me occupied. I missed college so started surfing the web for something to do. I thought of Richard and looked to see if there were dragon boat teams in so cal. The thinking was that if I joined a team down here, maybe i'd see him and his team at a race. I don't know how many teams I looked at. All I remember is that as I was looking through pictures on a website, I found Art in one of the pictures. The team was LARD. I looked at their race results to try to see how good they were. I talked to some of my other friends to make sure that was Art and then I got his contact info and asked him to take me to practice with him one day.

As it turns out, Art had mentioned dragon boat to a group of us at lunch back in high school. At the time I kinda blew it off because it was so far from Upland, seemed like it took so much time and it kinda coincided with my martial arts practice.

First practice was probably in March or April 2005. I didn't know anyone besides Art. When we walked up to the tree, I remember someone saying "Fresh meat!" It was a joke but kinda made me scared. I think someone loaned me their wood paddle so I didn't have to suffer thought the heavy yellow paddles. Practice was still rough. I remember I liked Leon's coaching style. My back hurt. It hurt so bad that when I went to work on Monday, I could barely sit down. The whole lower back and my sides hurt. I was so tired I fell asleep on the way home from practice.

Apparently pain doesn't scare me away. Not more than about 2 weeks after I started, I talked Aaron into trying the sport out too. At the time, we were both in Upland and were evening walking/running buddies. So the 3 of us carpooled once a week to practice from Upland.

My first race was 2005 Baby Long Beach. My boat had 3 heats and I was in all of them. I knew that dragon boat was tiring but I didn't realize until this race just how tiring it was. By the end of the last race, I was completely spent. I couldn't've given any more than I did. We finished 2nd by less than 1/2 a boat length. I remember we had to wait a lot. I wasn't used to so much waiting. It was hot. I used sunscreen but only in the morning so I got a sunburn. I remember I was surprised at the array of teams and especially the number of teams tied to corporations like Aerospace Corp and Northrop Grumman.

I left the team in June to go to Seattle for a new job. People kept talking about a guy named Yang. They said he was up there too. I tried out a couple Seattle teams and researched them. I was looking for something like LARD. I was comfortable surounded by a lot of Asians and I wanted that family connection. Lard may not have felt like my family back then but I knew there was a large family core and everyone else was brought into that family by friendship. I did what I could in Seattle but I was already spoiled by the sun, friendship, and the BUKs in Long Beach. All I wanted was to paddle with LARD again. In YVR, I looked for LARD and Art and Aaron.

The first thing I did when I found out I was moving back to so cal in 2007 was sign up to go to YVR with LARD. First thing I did when I came back was to go to practice.

Jessica Lee (2010)


P7310252

Men

Chang, Chuck
Chekmizoff, Nick
Cheng, Jason
Cheng, Leon
Chhean, Andy
Chhean, Dennis
Chin, Matt
Do, Thanh
Feng, Mark
Fong, Aaron
Hu, Yang
Kang, Sam
Kromhout, Greg
Lau, Peter
Lee, Oliver
Lin, William
Liu, Henry
Maher, Rich
Minkoff, Evan
Ni, Jason
Ni, Michael
Wang, Gary
Wang, Nick
Wong, Jesse
Wong, Jason
Wu, Gene
Wu, Scott
Yang, Tony
Yeh, Arthur

Women

Bose, Ranee
Calderon, Debbie
Chan, Karen
Chen, Lilly
Cheng, Karen
Chung, Connie
Copeland, Carla
Foley, Susan
Funatsu, Kristin
Hu, Stephanie
Krier, Daryle
Lam, Yonnie
Lim, Evelyn
McCabe, Diane
Nham, Pam
Nham, Tran
Robles, Vicki
Sable, Laura
Soonthon, Gilda
Teng, Nienchtae
Wee, Huay
Wong, Andrea
W-Cheng, Wynne
W-Kromhout, Wileen
Wu, Tiffany

Black

Chang, Chuck
Chekmizoff, Nick
Cheng, Jason
Feng, Mark
Kang, Sam
Kromhout, Greg
Lee, Oliver
Lin, William
Maher, Rich
Minkoff, Evan
Wang, Gary
Wong, Jason
Wong, Jesse
Wu, Scott
Cheng, Karen
Foley, Susan
Lam, Yonnie
Lim, Evelyn
McCabe, Diane
Nham, Tran
Robles, Vicki
W-Cheng, Wynne
W-Kromhout, Wileen
Wee, Huay
Cheng, Leon

Red

Chang, Chuck
Chekmizoff, Nick
Cheng, Jason
Feng, Mark
Kang, Sam
Kromhout, Greg
Lin, William
Maher, Rich
Minkoff, Evan
Wang, Gary
Wang, Nick
Wong, Jesse
Wu, Scott
Yang, Tony
Cheng, Karen
Copeland, Carla
Foley, Susan
Lam, Yonnie
Lim, Evelyn
McCabe, Diane
Robles, Vicki
Sable, Laura
W-Cheng, Wynne
W-Kromhout, Wileen
Wee, Huay
Cheng, Leon

PDBA

Chhean, Andy
Chhean, Dennis
Chin, Matt
Do, Thanh
Fong, Aaron
Hu, Yang
Lau, Peter
Liu, Henry
Ni, Jason
Ni, Michael
Wang, Nick
Wu, Gene
Yang, Tony
Yeh, Arthur
Bose, Ranee
Calderon, Debbie
Chan, Karen
Chung, Connie
Copeland, Carla
Funatsu, Kristin
Hu, Stephanie
Krier, Daryle
Nham, Pam
Sable, Laura
Soonthon, Gilda
Teng, Nienchtae
Wong, Andrea
Wu, Tiffany
Cheng, Jason