The Great Ormond Street Hospital event saw 20 teams raise over £145,000 for Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity, a charity devoted to life-saving research into childhood cancers and immune diseases. Everybody got involved in the day, even the spectators had a part on the day! The wind was particularly strong that Friday, but the dragon boats set off for a fearsome battle, we had a two boat racing format for the qualifying team races then three boat racing for the semi-final and the final race, all sorts of companies had a team involved, Lloyds of London, HSBC and Thomas miller this was great to see so many local businesses getting involved. Race the Dragon had installed a large marquee and event furniture to make people feel more comfortable on the day!
The first round was a warm up for the teams, where they could receive some Olympic style training and practice their technique’s before the real competition began. Some teams gained some great times of just over a minute for their first time on the water, going forward nobody could predict what would happen in the next two rounds.
In the second round teams needed to start getting the fastest time so they could to secure themselves into the final. The wind had increased which made even more of a challenge, but all of the teams rose to the occasion and powered through even harder, race by race.
Not only was there dragon boating, but an array of land activities competitors and spectators could get involved in-between there races, such as massive Jenga and connect four. This wasn’t the main focus of land activities though, we also had the ergo challenge where you see how far you can paddle in 1 minute on a machine, with a bottle of champagne presented to the winner, some people were doing amazing with distances of around 218 meters, but the best time of the day came in at 254 meters in 1 minute. To fill the team’s appetites and quench their thirsts we had a fully functional bottle bar and a BBQ which serves hot dogs, burgers and bacon. To go along side this Race the Dragon had installed a large marquee and event furniture to make people feel more comfortable on the day!
With the day culminating in an exciting final, the four fastest teams were ready to race for the final time, Last year’s grand finale saw a nail-biting finish with a tie for first place between Scorpio Group and RS Platou, but this year nothing could compare to the race ahead a four boat race with some of the best paddlers we had seen all year, Scorpio Stingers, Talbot Marina Machine, Lloyd’s Register and Nomikos were the finalists, everyone cheered them on while the powered down the course at impressive speeds but it had to come to an end and the Scorpio Stingers managed to smash their opponents with an amazing time of 49.12 seconds all winning themselves a gold medal and a team trophy.
When the day had come to an end a local DJ preformed from the control tent to the teams so that they could happily finish their drinks and compare race day stories.