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Flying finish for wacky Wards Solicitors in Dragon Boat Race

Flying finish for wacky Wards Solicitors in Dragon Boat Race

Drat! And double drat!

Inspired by the sixties cartoon series, Wacky Races, the Wards Solicitors team made a splash in Bristol's annual Dragon Boat Festival - even though the judges awarding the fancy dress prizes had never heard of Dick Dastardly or his canine accomplice, Muttley.

Unperturbed, the team took to the water and with a crew of pigeons helping out - those with good memories will recall the TV show was based on Dick and Muttley's hilarious efforts to stop a pesky carrier pigeon in his tracks - the Go ForWards team came a very respectable 29th out of 34 teams.

Charity boost

The event, organised by The Rotary Club of Bristol Breakfast and held at the city's Harbourside, was started in 2001 and always raises a huge amount of money for charity.

Six, 40 foot dragon boats are used with decorative dragon heads and tails with each boat taking 12 to 16 paddlers plus a drummer to beat the stroke.

Heats with three boats compete to establish the six teams with the fastest times who then compete in the semi-finals and final. Every team races three heats and their two fastest times count. The race distance is about 200 metres and up to 36 teams take part in a full day's racing.

Supporting BRACE and The Green House

This year the Wards Solicitors' team alone raised more than £700 for BRACE, which funds research into dementia, and The Green House, the Dragon Boat Festival's headline charity for 2016, which provides free counselling to victims of rape and sexual abuse. And the total is still rising.

Taking part for Wards Solicitors were Jenny Pierce (crew manager), Richard Clement (captain), Mohamed Abdi, Amy Jones (also in charge of food), Sylvie Feltham, Clare Mizen, Ruth Coles, Tom Bowering, Ciaran Keane, Matthew Pitt, Richard Green, Rebecca Purchase and Rebecca Stuart. Additional invaluable support came from Alban Foster Director of SLR Consulting, Joanna Hedges of Harding Retail, Daniel St Quintin Consultant at Beach Baker and Carlin McCormack of Polaris Consulting.

Wards Solicitors is also extremely grateful to Mike Ashbee of estate agent's Davies & Way who sponsored the Wacky Races team to the tune of £100 and Matt Gregory of Gregory's Estate Agents who gave £50.

A big thank you

Jenny Pierce, Head of Wills, Probate and Mental Capacity at Wards Solicitors, said: "It was an amazingly fun day, the weather was kind to us and the racing was brilliant. Unfortunately, the judges had never heard of Wacky Races and maybe just thought we were a bit odd but that did not deter us! Well done and thank you to everyone who took part."

Donations can still be made via the following link: