Tropical Titans returned to contention at the Champions Boat League (CBL-2) by rowing to a thumping victory after losing last week’s race, while underdogs Ripple Breakers emerged second by pushing Mighty Oars to the third place at Pulinkunnu in this coastal district of Kerala today.
Weathering the bright rays of the evening sun falling on them, the reigning champions Tropical Titans (locally Pallathuruthy Boat Club, rowing Mahadevikad Kattil Thekkethil) asserted their supremacy at the Pampa river by topping with a timing of 3:49.51 minutes, ahead of Ripple Breakers (Punnamada Boat Club, Veeyapuram – 3:51.26) who made an incredible surge in the last ten metres of the decisive final. Mighty Oars (NCDC, Nadubhagam – 3:51.31), who had finished first in last Saturday’s race at Karuvatta in this district, were thus reduced in Pulinkunnu to the third rank — though by a margin of just five microseconds.
Today’s performance marked a sweet revenge by Tropical Titans, who had narrowly lost to Mighty Oars last weekend at the second of the nine-race CBL-2 slated to conclude on November 26. At Karuvatta on September 17, Mighty Oars won by six microseconds, serving a thrilling upset at the IPL-style snake-boat race event being organised by Kerala Tourism.
At the Pulinkunnu race today, Ripple Breakers, which had finished third at the Punnamada race last Saturday, proved to be formidable by clocking the best timings in the heats.
With today’s results, Tropical Titans regained the top slot on the list with 29 points, followed by Mighty Oars (27 points) and Ripple Breakers (24).
The next round CBL-2 is slated at Piravom in Ernakulam district, with the boat race slated to be held on the Muvattupuzha river on October 1.
The inaugurals of the league in Alappuzha on September 4 saw Tropical Titans winning the race as part of the 68th edition of the famed Nehru Trophy Boat Race on the sprawling Punnamada Lake, out-rowing Might Oars in a photo-finish.
In the tally now, after Ripple Breakers, is Raging Rowers (Kerala Police Boat Club, Champakulam – 20 points) at fourth place, while Pride Chasers (Vembanad Boat Club, Payippad with 18 points are in the fifth place. Coast Dominators (UBC Kainakary, Karichal) with 16 points are in the fifth place. Backwater Warriors (Town Boat Club, St Pious Tenth – 12 points), Thunder Oars (KBC-SFBC, Ayaparambu Pandi – 8 points) and Backwater Knights (Village Boat Club, Devas – 7 points) occupy the seventh, eighth and ninth positions respectively.
Each participating team will get Rs 4 lakh. The CBL-2 winners will get an additional Rs 5 lakh, followed by Rs 3 lakh for the runner-up and Rs 1 lakh for the second runner-up.
Today’s CBL-2 boat race was inaugurated by Prof N. Jayaraj, Chief Whip to the Kerala Government, who also announced open the Rajiv Gandhi Boat Race held simultaneously. While Kuttanad MLA Thomas K. Thomas presided over the ceremony, the prizes were given away by Alappuzha District Collector V.R. Krishna Teja, former Director of Kerala Tourism.
The CBL races, after next Saturday’s at Piravom, will be at Marine Drive, Kochi (October 8), Kottappuram near Kodungallur (October 15), Kainakary in Alappuzha (October 22), Thazhathangadi near Kottayam (October 29), Pandanad near Chengannur (November 5), Kayamkulam in Alappuzha district (November 12) and Kallada in Kollam district (November 19) before the finals at President’s Trophy in Kollam (November 26).
CBL-2 at Alappuzha was inaugurated on September 4 by Finance Minister K.N. Balagopal.
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