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Navy survives inspired Bruins

Top favorite Philippine Navy nearly sank to upset-conscious Bruins A before eking out a narrow win in the 300-meter men’s open standard division of the second leg of the rain-delayed Cobra Energy Drink-PDBF Dragon Boat Regatta at the Manila Bay last Sunday.

Capping a long day and with dusk fast approaching, the Seamen foiled the spirited challenge of Bruins paddlers, once mentored by ex-national coach Manny Maya, in topping the race by a whisker in one minute and 16.64 seconds to their rivals’ 1:16.90.

Philippine Air Force was third (1:17.70) while Philippine Coast Guard wound up fourth (1:18.47) in the event held overlooking the Baywalk along Roxas Boulevard in Manila and supported by Cobra, the country’s leading energy drink.

The Coast Guard bets earlier took top honors in the 300-meter mixed standard finals (1:16.14) with Navy (1:17.30) and Air Force (1:18.05) placing second and third, respectively, in the competition organized by Cobra and the Philippine Dragon Boat Federation.

Air Force, on the other hand, showed its mettle in handily capturing 300-meter women’s small boat title (1:33.60) in the field that drew another huge field of 51 teams.

The Coast Guard team also ruled the women’s small boat B division (1:40.32), Triton A the mixed standard B category (1 :19.87) and Blue Phoenix the men’s standard B class (1:19.22).

Despite a heavy noon downpour that stretched the schedule a little past sunset, the paddlers showed patience and unity in remaining until the awarding ceremonies was over.

PDBF president Marcia Cristobal thanked all the participants for supporting the Cobra regatta second leg.