The Chinese School of Woking

DRUMS beat out a rhythm across Goldsworth Park Lake as teams of paddlers vied to speed colourful boats across the water on Sunday.

Twenty-two teams competed in this year’s dragon boat races, raising money for the Woking and Same Beare Hospices charity – urged on by drummers sitting in the bow. Many of the crews were racing for the first time.

A team of mighty dragon boat racers take to the water, urged on by the beat of their drummer

The 2019 champions were Viscount, one of two teams entered by builders Natta, from Crondall, near Farnham. The company came second last year.

Hundreds of people turned out to watch the races and take part in the family fun day run alongside the event.

A lion from the Chinese School of Woking dances to encourage the racers and bring them fortune

Members of the Chinese School of Woking performed an awakening ceremony dance with their Chinese lions and the painting of the dragon’s eyes by Richard Roberts of sponsors Trident Honda and hospice supporter Sue Cook.

Rachelle Barnett, the events manager for Woking & Sam Beare Hospices, said: “We are delighted to have had so many teams take part this year, the money raised will help us continue to provide our specialist care.

“We would also like to say a huge thank you to all the incredible volunteers who help set up and run the event, we couldn’t do it without them, to the community for joining us and enjoying the day, to all our fantastic Dragon Boat Teams and of course Trident Honda for sponsoring this event for the fourth year – we are truly grateful to you all.”  

See the special picture feature in today’s (23 May) News & Mail