It's time to get into fancy dress as Stratford Boat Club's Fun Regatta returns this weekend
ROWERS will once again grace themselves in fancy dress this Saturday as the Stratford Boat Club Fun Regatta makes a welcome return to the calendar.
Sixteen crews, with just three hours’ worth of training, will compete in a number of side-by-side races in the club’s learn to row stable boats.
Joint-organiser Simon Price said: “We’d like to encourage people to come down to the boat club or the river to support the crews. It is great to watch as there’s lots of splashing, some crazy outfits and plenty of competitive banter.”
Fellow joint-organiser Chris Belcher added: “It is a fabulous fun day for all the family and it also helps the club raise vital funds to buy boats and equipment for future and current athletes.
“We’re very grateful for the support of all our hard-working members who run the regatta, tea tent and barbecue. We’re especially grateful to our river neighbours for their tolerance during this event and for sponsors such as the Crowne Plaza Stratford.”
Racing starts at 9am and the victors will be crowned around 4.30pm, river traffic permitting.
The Fun Regatta, originally called the Pubs and Clubs Regatta, started on the Sunday following the main regatta.
As the event grew in size and popularity, it was moved to July as a stand-alone event.
Entry requirements are simple – a crew of four people with basic swimming ability.
Each team is given three one-hour training sessions ahead of the regatta with one of the boat club’s volunteer coaches. On the day of the regatta, each crew is given a cox and compete in a minimum of three side-by-side races. The fastest crews qualify for the semi-finals and the finals.
Fancy dress has become quite a major part of the day, with separate prizes for the best dressed and named crews.
Boat club chairman Dawson Curnock said: “After two years off the river, we’re more than ready to go with the Fun Regatta, we know it’s going to be a great day. There is great viewing from the Rec, RSC terrace, Bancroft Gardens and the club grounds where there will be a tea tent, food wagon and bar. All are very welcome.”