Sunday, 15 June 2008

Boat Racing In Thailand

The Boat races are held in Thailand every year during the month of September when all the rivers and waterways are in full spate. The races are held across the country specially in provinces of Pichit, Phitsanulok, Narathiwat, Nan, Angthong, Pathum Thani, Surat Thani and Ayutthaya.

The boat racing is a traditional event in Thailand. History of boat racing goes back to Ayutthaya kingdom, some 600 years ago. During those times the boat races were held to keep men physically and mentally fit during times when there were constant shadows of war looming over the country. However, today boat races are entertainment and boat racing is considered to be a national sport.

The boats used in boat racing are constructed from a single large trunk of a dugout tree. Each boat can accommodate a maximum of 60 oarsmen. The oarsmen sit in two rows in order to make the boat move with maximum speed. Each boat is given a different colored dress. All oarsmen in a boat wear a similar outfits. During the race, the boats are decorated with a large number of flowers and ribbons.

The boat race is a colorful festival, which attracts several local as well as the foreign spectators. The spectators watch the sport with utmost enthusiasm and this lasts right till the end of the race with spectators cheering their favorite team. The impromptu narration of the professional announcer makes the sport all the more interesting and the spectators have a plenty of fun during the sport. At the end of the race, the winning team is awarded a trophy and prize.