100 canoeists take to the Ouse for annual River Festival races

100 canoeists take to the Ouse for annual River Festival races

York Canoe Races get under way at the Millennium Bridge on the River Ouse, York. Pictures: Anna Gowthorpe

The annual River Festival Canoe Races

First published in News

MORE than 100 people paddled through the storm on Saturday afternoon at the annual River Festival Canoe Races.

The races started from the Millennium Bridge and involved three different races for beginners, kayakers and Canadian canoeists alike.

Organiser Phil Puckrin said the heavy rainstorms did little to deter their committed competitors, some of whom travelled from Manchester and Sunderland to race on the Ouse.

“The canoeists paddled through the storm, and they liked it because it kept them cool but it made things difficult for the time keepers.”

One of the races was won by veteran competitors Eric and Catherine Cox, who travelled from Lincolnshire, At 77 years old, Eric is still unbeaten in his class.

Mr Puckrin said: “He’s a former national champion so he’s got some class, and he’s still too good for most people.

“We had some good close finished in both the double and singles races, and everybody enjoyed it.”

The races attracted families and special needs groups as well as the keen canoe racers, he added.

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