Boat swapping scandal at Browns

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Thirty three paddlers raced at Browns Rivulet last Tuesday (17th March) in the penultimate Brown’s Race for the year. Recent rain had filled the estuary and cleared out some of the weed, so although the water really was Brown, it was a lot better for racing on.

The weather was good, wind dropped out totally just before the race started, and it was all looking good until a controversy erupted as one (un-named) paddler started at his allotted handicap time, but had, unbeknownst to the handicapper, swapped boats between race entry and race start. The swap from a short, slow RPM to a light racing Sea Kayak gave him a 4 minute handicap advantage, and he crossed the finish line almost 4 minutes ahead of the next paddler. Officials had no choice but to scratch him from the Line Honours list. But if you look carefully, you may spot him in the corrected time placings.

Other than the above, the handicaps weren’t bad with 22 paddlers across the line within 1 minute. The un-tried combination of Gray/Mollison in the DRR C2 crossed first, but as it was their first race in that combination are ineleigible for a Line Honours prize at presentations as their handicap was only a guess. That left first prize open to Brent Ranson, followed by Jax Foster in only her second race this year, and Andy Maver.

And we had two dead heats at the finish line – Rob Furmston and Justin Boocock, and Matt Dalziel and Ian Cooksie. Repeated viewings of the video couldn’t separate these two pairings. A first I think.

This race will be used to update the handicaps for the final race, which, as always will be a Long Handicap race. Starts will be at 5 or 10 second intervals (I haven’t decided yet). You’ll be given your start time at entry, and the starter will only call start times out, not names. So if you miss your alloted start time…ooopps.

And don’t forget the Last Race is followed by the presentations Barbecue. Mountain Creek outdoor shop have kindly donated some cash prizes. There will be the famous Brown Duck wines, as well as a host of trophies for the lucky category winners. And Dan Firth said he’d bring some home brew. Onya Dan.

Let there Be Light
If you have a gas or battery flouro lantern, please bring it along for the presentations and some string to hang them from the rafters.The more light we have the better ’cause it will be dark by about 7.30 I guess – its the last Tuesday before daylight savings ends.