SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Sarasota’s own Nathan Benderson Park has been chosen as the host for the 2022 International Dragon Boat Federation (IDBF) Club Crew World Championships. This will be the event’s debut in the United States.
Nathan Benderson Park will also play host to the 2021 U.S. Dragon Boat Federation (USDBF) National Championships. “NBP continues to prove to be a successful sport attraction that impacts not only our community, but Florida and the United States,” SANCA President and CEO Stephen V. Rodriguez said.
The 2022 championship event will be the 13th club crew world championships. The IDBF Club Crew World Championships includes representative clubs from around the world. Clubs will send winning crews to the world event from four regions of the U.S.
“Hosting this world championship has an impact that goes beyond just economic benefit,” Rodriguez said. “This will impact the sport of dragon boat racing in our state and nationwide. We are prepared to invest more resources into our local dragon boat programming to prepare for this event. We thank IDBF for their confidence in awarding this event to Sarasota County.”
IDBF President Mike Thomas says members of the IDBF are all looking forward to racing in Nathan Benderson Park, with its superb facilities. USDBF president Andrew Szymanski described Nathan Benderson Park as a “world-class venue with facilities that are ideally suited for the championships."
Sarasota County Sports Director Shelby Connett said that the county is thrilled to to be chosen as the host for both the 2021 and 2022 events and aims to welcome the thousands of athletes and fans in a big way.
“We are absolutely thrilled to have been selected,” Connett said. “This selection was a huge win for Sarasota County. In addition to offering amazing racing conditions through Nathan Benderson Park’s superb course, we look forward to providing competitors with a destination-wide event experience by engaging the local community in a variety of ways."