Sunday 2nd July 2023
Winners: The Real Redcaps (The Royal Military Police)
Runners up: 'Valhalla's Dragons' (HMS Collingwood)
Youth winners: 'Westbourne Explorers' (1st Westbourne Scout Group)
Youth runners up: 1st Barnham Scout Group
Winner of Best Dressed: 'Cancerwise Corkers' (Cancerwise)
Photo credits: Keith Woodland Photography; David Richardson; Dave Standley
On a sunny Sunday afternoon, the picturesque Chichester Canal Basin was transformed into a vibrant and competitive arena as 13 teams, including 4 scout teams, participated in a thrilling Dragon Boat Challenge charity event. Organized by the Rotary Club of Chichester Priory, the event aimed to raise funds for CancerWise and other Rotary charities.
Under the watchful eye of the Mayor of Chichester, the teams battled it out on the water, displaying incredible strength, teamwork, and determination. The atmosphere was electric, with cheers and applause echoing across the Basin as the boats raced towards the finish line.
The event not only showcased the competitive spirit of the participants but also highlighted the strong sense of community in Chichester. Families, friends, and local residents gathered along the shore, enjoying the beautiful weather and supporting their favourite teams. The event truly brought people together, fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie among the attendees.
With such a strong entry this year we were able to run a “Scouts’ competition with 6 Heats as well as our adult competition with 14 Heats.
Our Scouts Final saw Westbourne Explorers battle it out to a close fought finish with the 1st Barnham Scouts, the Westbourne team winning by a very short Dragons Head. Their time was 1 minute 4.21 seconds. !st Barnham’s time was 1 minute 4.58 seconds.
Our Adult final saw the Royal Military Police (The Real Redcaps) win over HMS Collingwood (Valhalla’s Dragons). The Redcaps time was 1 minute 0.57 seconds.
Each of our 2 Winning teams received a Glass trophy which they will keep and Gold and Silver Medals for the 4 finalists. All presented by the Chichester Mayor.
During the event one of our Heats featured Chichester’s own Boat Race – The University versus the College! This was another very closely fought race with the University winning by just 0.15 seconds. Hopefully we can make this a regular feature of the day.
With close racing like this I am sure many of the teams will want to come back next year for another attempt.
Our thanks to Roger and his team from Dragon Boat Events who managed all the water based activity for us and to the Canal Trust for lending us the Canal for the day.