The competition attracted 59 teams featuring around 6,000 athletes from provinces and cities in the region, such as Soc Trang, Bac Lieu, Ca Mau, Hau Giang, Kien Giang, Tra Vinh and Vinh Long. Teams competed in two distances of 1,200m and 1,000m. The male and female teams of Pong Tuk Chas pagoda and Tum Nup pagoda in Soc Trang province respectively won first prizes in the two categories.
‘Ngo’ boat (Ghe Ngo) is considered a sacred object of the ethnic Khmer people. The special boat is made of wood by artisans and Khmer Buddhist monks. The boat is decorated with images of dragons, tigers, elephants, lions and peacocks representing the power of the boat.
The much awaited ‘Ngo Boat Race’ is part of the traditional Ooc Om Bok Festival and one of the highlights of the many traditional historical and cultural events of the Khmer people.