Myth and legend surround the history of dragon boat racing, which is believed to have started more than 2000 years ago in southern China as a fertility rite performed to ensure bountiful crops.
Over the centuries a second story was integrated to give the celebrations a dual meaning and to commemorate the celebrated Chinese poet and patriot Qu Yuan, who drowned himself in the Miluo River to protest against the corruption of his time. To this day, vibrant dragon boat festivals are held around the world every year on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month to celebrate this event.
The year 1976 is considered the birth of modern day dragon boat racing when the Hong Kong Tourist Association together with the Association of Hong Kong Fishermen organized the first international race in Hong Kong. The development of the sport is governed by the International Dragon Boat Federation, which have facilitated the global development of one of the fastest growing water sport in the world. Today, dragon boat racing remains an important sporting event for many countries with international competitions held around the world every year.
DEVELOPMENT IN QATAR
Dragon boat racing has its humble beginnings in Qatar when the first dragon boat was shipped to Doha on October 2013. Within this short time frame, multiple dragon boat teams have setup as well as the organization of the first dragon boat competition in Qatar. The sport continues to grow and attract athletes of all levels in Qatar.