Walcha resident Graham Reeves has been recognised by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson for representing New South Wales in the 2017 Australian Dragon Boat Championships.
Mr Anderson presented Mr Reeves with his award last week in Walcha and said that he has done his community proud.
“It is important to recognise the sporting achievements of our locals and to have Graham representing Walcha, the Tamworth electorate and NSW at the Dragon Boat Championships is a proud moment for our community.
Originally from Warialda, Mr Reeves moved to Walcha two years ago from Armidale.
“Dragon boat racing began as an out of season activity for the Armidale veterans hockey team in 2012 and I’ve been doing it ever since,” he said.
“We practice on Malpas Dam every Sunday and during daylight saving every Thursday as well.”
The club competes during the summer as part of the Coffs Harbour Team.
“We train harder as our Armidale club practices using an old boat with a team of only seven and at high altitude on fresh water,” he said.
“When we compete down on the coast as part of a full team of twenty on salt water in a modern boat it is a dream.”
The 2017 Australian Dragon Boat Championships were held in Albury Wodonga in April and saw clubs from all states compete against one another.
The NSW Government State Representative Awards recognise people who have represented NSW in a competitive field such as sport, music, the arts or academia.
“It’s nice to be recognised,” said Mr Reeves.
“Dragonboat racing is one of the fastest growing water sports in Australia at the moment.”