Sunday 8th May saw over 500 people come to Salford Quays to compete in glorious sunshine in the 2016 annual Salford Dragon Boat Festival.
Using four dragon boats, racing on a two-on-two format (two dragon boat racing whilst the other two boats loaded the next race), each team had a minimum of three timed races during the day. After each race the results went up on the Race the Dragon Ltd. score board for all to see and compare. Dragon boating is quick to pick up and so, very progressive in nature. By race two, teams really understood what the race involves and by round three, first timers and returning teams were competing on equal footing. This meannt that until the final qualifying race has been completed, the qualifiers for the Grand Final would not be known for sure.
Each team had three qualifying races, where their best time only is used for qualification into the Grand Final. Consequently making a hash of one (or even two) races does not matter as long as the team brings in one really good result. The Grand Final was the only race of the day where all four dragon boats were raced together and (as expected), the most exciting race of the day.
Commiserations went to "Y CLUB" who after posting a time 0.48.62 in their third race (which put them into forth place and therefore Grand Final contention), were cruelly pushed into fifth place in the very last qualifying race by newcomers "Robocops", who put in a spectacular race to came in one second quicker with 0.47.62.