Maraton lađa is a rowing competition which involves racing of traditional vessels, known as lađa, which are native to the Lower Neretva River which flows through the Croatia. Lađa were used by the old Neretva pirates, who terrorised the area back in the 10th century. To preserve the traditions of the old Lađa, the rowing race from Metković to Ploče was introduced for the first time in 1998, and this year for the first time 10 women’s teams have competed in their own women’s Maraton. Women have been part of crews before, but this was the first time that a solely women’s competition was held.
Competing Lađa’s must meet certain requirements. Apart from being wooden, they must be between 7 and 8.2 meters in length, between 2.45 and 2.8 meters wide, 70cm deep, with 23 spokes or wooden rods. The oars must also be made of wood. The event, which always draws a large crowd, saw the women’s winning team Kominke finish the 22.5km long course in 70 minutes. Second place went to team Stabline with Metkovke finishing third.