THE stellar event of the Ocean Village Marina Festival weekend was again the now legendary RAOB Ocean Village Charity Cardboard Boat Race.
The spectacular event - in its ninth year - drew a record number of entries for the two events staged.
Organisers David Gibbins and Darren Olivero of the William Tilley Lodge of the RAOB said that the event raised a fantastic £6,174 which will be shared between the Gibraltar Society for the Visually Impaired and the GBC Open Day Appeal.
They expressed their gratitude to Ocean Village for hosting the event and for the contribution of £1,000 towards the total raised.
Before the race, the competitors and their beautifully-crafted vessels were displayed in Grand Casemates Square for judges’ scrutiny and the awarding of the land-based awards.
The junior award for best boat design went to Hawaii Five Uh-Oh for their Polynesian themed boat. The junior award for Best fancy dress was a tough call but the judges decided to award it to O’Reilly’s Pink Pirates.
The adult best boat design award proved to be a real challenge with a number of great designs. Among them the impressive huge Yellow Submarine from Lynx FC, the flower creation from the Alameda Gardens and the Pink Percy vessel from Marks and Spencer.
But the overall winner was the Gibraltar Prison Service entry for their prison inspired vessel S.K.P. and 19th century prison uniforms. ‘Zombie Apocalypse’ took the adult Best fancy dress award.
After the judging the competitors and boats made their way to Ocean Village Marina where the first race was for junior entries. Three of the six entries sank before making any significant progress leaving ‘Green Machine’ from Europa FC to romp home worthy winners, followed home by ‘Needs Repair’ from Repair and Go. Despite being towed home by the rescue boat the gallant young ‘Pink Pirates’ snatched third prize.
Despite the odd mishap at the start and at least one clear case of sabotage, 10 boats made an impressive start in the adult race. By the half way stage ‘Last Minute’ had forged a clear lead which was maintained to come home as worthy winners.
In second place was ‘Needs Repair’ and third was the entry from ’Little Rock’. The award for the Titanic Sinking went to the beautifully designed but clearly unstable ‘Hawaii Five Uh-Oh’.
With a major prize still up for grabs it was time for a grand finale between the two fastest boats on the day. This second outing of the day for ‘Last Minute’ was a race too far as it disintegrated under the strain leaving the impressive ‘Needs Repair’ as overall champions.
The prizes were presented by Miss Gibraltar 2017 Jodie Garcia, ably assisted by her first and second princesses, Tessa Britto and Sian Dean.