VIDEO: Duck race delight at outdoor activities centre

YELLOW competitors battled for supremacy in the Adur Outdoor Activities Centre Duck Race on Easter Sunday.

People were invited to sponsor a duck during the Open Weekend at the centre, in Brighton Road, Shoreham, and a small crowd gathered on the riverbank to watch the race during the afternoon.

Duck race winner Helen Holmes NGq3vtc3WtiNK_k1LKYh

Duck race winner Helen Holmes NGq3vtc3WtiNK_k1LKYh

Anyone hoping for a fast finish was disappointed as the ducks bobbed slowly along the river. Supporting crews in boats and on stand-up paddle boards did their best to encourage the little competitors and finally, the main group crossed the finish line, shortly before coming to rest by a nearby boat.

Spectators said it was hilarious fun but they had never seen a race take so long!

Finance administrator Rosie Upperton said: “The Open Weekend was very popular once again, seeing more than 400 people come through the doors of AOAC to try the activities we offer.

“Despite the dull weather, it did not deter people from our outdoor water-based activities and many sampled the delights of kayaking, stand up paddle boarding and sailing. As always, climbing and archery proved ever popular with young and old.

The yellow racers cross the finish line in the Duck Race SUS-150504-164229001

The yellow racers cross the finish line in the Duck Race SUS-150504-164229001

“VC Jubilee offered some tricky cycling skills on their specially designed circuit, and on Saturday, Forest Schools showed children how nature can be used in all things crafty.

“For those too young to try the activities, the Easter Egg hunt offered something different and kept the younger minds active by seeking out the eggs hidden all about the centre, and the Easter bunny popped by to say hello!

“On Sunday, we did it all over again with the addition of a face painter – bunnies proved the popular choice of the day!

“And, of course, the second AOAC duck race on the River Adur saw more than 230 yellow plastic ducks bob their way down the river, with duck number 1972 sponsored by Helen Holmes crossing the line first, Beau Bluefield taking second place and six-year-old Christian Shorney taking third.”

The winner received a hamper full of Easter goodies, which had been donated by Trisha Parsons.

Helen Holmes said: “This outdoor centre really has something to offer everybody. I loved the kayaking, and the different perspective that you get to view Shoreham from. Great teaching and a friendly welcome. Winning this duck race made my weekend.”

Centre manager Lee Mercer thanked all the staff and volunteers, as well as everybody who donated raffle prizes.