Kochi: Champions Boat League (CBL) sprang its best final by far in Season 3 when reigning champions Tropical Titans were forced to share their first position with Coast Dominators.
Both teams emerged toppers with an identical timing of 4:16.5 minutes at Piravom, 30 km east of the city. The result meant an uninterrupted fourth victory for Tropical Titans (rowing the Veeyapuram snake boat owned by Pallathuruthy Boat Club) in CBL Season 3, though this evening they had to share the honors with Coast Dominators (owned by UBC Kainakary Club, rowing Nadubhagom Chundan).
At third came the Raging Rowers (Police Boat Club on Mahadevikadu Kattil Thekethil) by clocking 4:23.02 at the Moovattupuzha River, where boats have to row upstream, on Saturday.
Coast Dominators put up a splendid show right from the start and were ahead almost till the end of the finals, but Tropical Titans sped faster in the last 100 meters, leading to the photo finish. Tropical Titans thus improved their reputation at Piravam, where their show had been below par in the previous editions of CBL.
At the fourth position today were the Mighty Oars (NCDC Boat Club on Niranam Chundan), who had last year put up a stellar show at Piravom in CBL Season 2. Kerala Tourism is organizing the IPL-model 12-leg championship, which will conclude on December 9.
Coming fifth today were the Ripple Breakers (Punnamada Boat Club on Karichal), followed by the Backwater Warriors (Kumarakom Town Boat Club on Champakulam Chundan). At seventh were the Pride Chasers (Vembanad Boat Club on Ayaparambu Pandi), while Thunder Oars (KBC & FBC on Payipadan Chundan) finished eighth, followed by the Backwater Kings (Niranam Boat Club on St. Pius Tenth).
Raging Rowers, who came in third today, were the runners-up at last weekend’s CBL race in Kottappuram, Thrissur district. The Coast Dominators had come in third in the finals.
Like at Kottapuram, the Piravam leg was amid rains, but they failed to dampen people’s participation. Crowds cheered the oarsmen at the fourth race, which was inaugurated by Industries Minister P. Rajeeve at a ceremony chaired by Anoop George, MLA.
Rajeeve, in his address, said the state government was committed to providing better tourism packages year after year.
Others at the function were Piravam Municipal Chairperson Eliamma Philip, film actor Lalu Alex, and Piravam Municipal Vice Chairman K.P. Salim, besides functionaries of civic bodies and allied organisations.
The next (fifth) race of CBL-3 will be held on October 7 at Thazhathangadi, near Kottayam. The subsequent races will be on October 14 (Pulinkunnu, Alappuzha), October 21 (Kainakary, Alappuzha), October 28 (Karuvatta, Alappuzha), November 18 (Kayamkulam, Alappuzha), November 25 (Kallada, Kollam), December 2 (Pandanad, near Chengannur in Alappuzha), and the final on December 9 (at Kollam, along with the President’s Trophy).
CBL Season 3 began on August 12 at Alappuzha with the famed Nehru Trophy Boat Race. Tropical Titans, who had won the inaugural CBL Season-3 race at Alappuzha, went on to repeat their stellar show at Kochi on September 16 and at Kottappuram near Kodungallur (Thrissur district) last weekend.
Tropical Titans had been CBL champions in both the previous editions (2019 and ’22).