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Peng Linwu, China's first F1 powerboatman
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10:01, October 07, 2007

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At the Chinese Grand Prix of the F1 powerboat world championship in Xi'an on Friday, the only Chinese native contestant Peng Linwu finished the match smoothly and got the 12th place, the best result he has got in his career.

Peng Linwu is by far the only Chinese to obtain a Super License to drive an F1 boat. However, he was majoring in shooting when he first entered the sports realm.

"Yes, the match is extremely tough today, however, for me, the only dream is to keep the powerboat with Chinese flag visible throughout the whole match, and I made it," Peng said.

"I am satisfied with my performance today!" he added.

He joined in the Motorboat Team of Jiangxi Province in 1981, and hereafter has become a "leading actor" of national championships.

Though Peng obtained F1 license in Italy in 1995, Chinese had not appeared in the F1 powerboat arena until last year when Peng joined in the Chinese Tianrong Team.

Peng told Xinhua, "I can feel improvement in both driving technology and cooperation after one year's standard training and match participating."

As asked about how to obtain a Super License for F1 boat, he said, "It is quite different from ordinary people's thinking to obtain a super license. It is far more than that you can drive a motorboat. Knowing how to drive a motorboat is easy, however, the most important thing is to keep yourself from danger. Contestants usually died because they were choked with water in former F1 matches."

Peng added, "Before obtaining a Super License to drive an F1 boat, drivers undergo a stringent medical and also an immersion test. This involves being strapped into a mock F1 cockpit. The cell is flipped over and the driver has to make his escape while being judged by safety officials."

Peng said, "Once awarded a license to race in F1, a novice then starts the long haul to stardom and there is ample evidence to show there is no easy route to the top. Too much enthusiasm spells disaster as the lightweight outfits leave little room for error."

Though it is extremely hard to gain top positions in the western-dominated F1 Powerboat Championship, and powerboat, the non-Olympic sport, remains a minor aspect in the surroundings of "Olympic heat" in today's world, Peng enjoyed "his game" very much.

"There are over 1.3 billion Chinese and I am the only to obtain the Super License to drive an F1 boat. In this realm, I am the pilot of China. Everything I've paid is worthy!"

Though in his forties now, the idea of quitting F1 Powerboat has never occurred to Peng.

"If I couldn't participate in the F1 matches any more someday, I would be a coach and lead a powerboat team. I have been the coach of China Team and a planner of national powerboat matches for years. During the past 25 years, I have never even thought about quitting this sport. Contestant, coach, match planner ... whatever, I have dedicated myself to powerboat long before," Peng said.

Source: Xinhua

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