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Venice Universities Dragon Boat celebrating the victory in Suzhou during the 2019 Jinji Lake Dragon Boat Festival

Posted On 12/06/2019

The Venice Universities Dragon Boat team, composed by students, professors and workers from Ca’ Foscari University and IUAV (Venice Architecture University), arrived in Suzhou for racing during the Jinji Lake Dragon Boat Festival. The festival is a yearly event and this year celebrates the 10 years anniversary, to which the Venice Universities team took part with a small boat women team (10 paddlers, 1 steerer, and a drummer). The delegation led by the coach and director of the Sports Office of Ca’ Foscari University, Sergio Barichello, stayed in Suzhou from June 3rd to 7th, this last day was also the day of the competition.

Athletes:
Anghetti Dalila
Di Maio Irene
De Pieri Michela
Lombardi Federica
Lui Silvia
Mucciante Lara
Nuscis Letizia
Saladini Manuela
Tanaka Erika
Urban Alice
Zhu Anna

Drummer:
Mazzucco Sergio

Coach:
Barichello Giuseppe

The Dragon Boat Festival is an important Chinese national holiday, which has a long historical and cultural tradition. Also, the participation of the Venetian dragon boat team to this festival has become a tradition, which started in 2013, when the team took part in this competition for the first time. Since then the Venice Universities went to Suzhou three times.

The participation in this race is one of the results from the friendly relationship between Venice and Suzhou cities, in particular, theForeign Affairs Bureau of the Suzhou city has been fundamental in promoting this sportive exchange between Ca' Foscari University andSuzhou Institute of Service Outsourcing (SISO). In fact, the delegation from Venice was hosted by SISO, which joined the competition with men standard boat (22 people) and women small boat (12 people). This year, the students of the Venice team raced with the girls from SISO, while SISO provided Venice team with a drummer for helping them to complete the teams, but it was a great occasion for an exchange of experiences and creating stronger friendship between the participants too.

In alternatively, Ca’ Foscari University hosted SISO dragon boat team, which came to Venice twice (in 2016 and 2018) for taking part in the Lion Cup, an international universities race organized by Ca’ Foscari, and the Vogalonga, the famous 32km long race across the lagoon.

In the city of Suzhou, which is renowned as the Oriental Venice, it was inevitable to find Italian friends. In fact, Venice team has been warmly welcomed and supported by one of the biggest Italian community in China, especially those from the Veneto region, they were old friends. Thanks to this close connection between expatriates’ Italian people, also, this year, the team could relax in the Suzhou city center enjoining the delicacies prepared by Frantz, owner of the Italian Restaurant Da Mario (Suhui Road no. 88).

Apart from the old friends, the team met new friends from the Venezia Football Club, which just opened a new office in Suzhou. VFC is conducting a great job in giving more possibilities to the children all over the world to play football and to go to Venice for unique experiences. Some representatives from the dragon boat team joined the press conference of the VFC, on June 6th afternoon, celebrating this important beginning for this reality with the other Italian people, including the Veneto region community, the Vice-mayor of Venice and a representant of the Italian Consulate General in Shanghai.

The Vice-major Mr. Massimiliano De Martin, and the Italian Counsel in Shanghai, Ms. Ludovica Murazzani, visited the SISO and participated in the dragon eyes dotting ceremony as good luck for the next day race. After seeing a small demonstration of the Venice dragon boat team, Mr. De Martin decided to watch the race the day after and stayed as an honorary guest to award the teams during the final ceremony. Furthermore, because Venice and Suzhou are sister cities, Venice team also got the International Cooperation Award.

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