Trentham Gardens was the idyllic destination for the World Corporate Cup of Dragonboat Racing this weekend (16th September 2017). After fabulous World Corporate Cup experiences in Triathlon in recent weeks and in Soccer for more than a decade, this time the competition was on the water, following the success of the Europe Corporate Cup at the same destination in 2016!
Crews from across the region and from throughout the UK pitched their gazebos and paddled their hearts out in this event for businesses and organisations of all kinds.
The SuperCentre Celebration registration took place at Cadwaladers Cafe, with many competitors taking the opportunity to sample the warm drinks on offer to counteract the early morning September chill. All competitors received a Games T-shirt, a souvenir programme, their ID badge as well as a decorative “Weekend Sports Warrior” coaster from Games sponsors Wade Ceramics.
Vibrant SuperCentre at Cadwaladers
Once registered they entered the Gardens and admired the beautiful surroundings before undertaking their racing and safety briefings and getting their buoyancy aids and paddles.
As the racing commenced there were some competitive battles taking place with every encounter. Each crew would battle it out in 3 x 333m heats to post their fastest time across the 1000m challenge! However, there were a few showpiece encounters spicing up the proceedings with Stoke-On-Trent City Council and Newcastle Borough Council locking horns as well as Nottinghamshire and Staffordshire Police respectively.
Previous entrants Mitten Clarke were looking fluid in their white strips and the pale blue shirts of Wade Ceramics were looking good too. Both of these crews were improving with every race.
Ian Marsden with the Ice White crew from Mitten Clarke
The Walton Centre, Mellors Catering services and Stoke fit looked to be having heaps of fun and there were some incredibly close races across the day.
The Lord and Lady Mayoress had dropped by to support the event which was really appreciated by everyone in attendance and the Chief Executive of the Games Official Charity, David Webster of the Dougie Mac Hospice was also supporting the Cup.
David Webster is seen here presenting one of the impressive hand crafted, Wade Ceramics World Corporate Cup Awards, to the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Stoke-On-Trent, in recognition of the City’s support for the Cup as part of the City of Sport Legacy programme.
After some exhilarating racing for everyone involved we moved to establish the top 8 positions with 3 spectacular finals. Some of the races were so close that we needed a photo finish to separate the teams.
The Grand Final was all set up to be a closely contested encounter with the experienced Nottinghamshire Police crew taking on the youthful apprentices from Goodwin PLC and Phil Fortunes fit band of friends from Staffordshire Police.
The Grand final did not disappoint, with all three of the finalists competing for the medals and each of the crews posting their fastest times from the whole day!
The Top 10 placings were as follows but everyone had a wonderful experience.
In the Worldwide Corporate Sport Community we firmly believe that everyone who takes part is a winner and the spirit from the competitors in this event was a joy to behold.
Local Paralympic Medalists, Ian Marsden and Jenny Booth were on hand to present the worthy winners and runners up with their medals. The winners of the World Corporate Cup of Dragonboat Racing 2017 are Nottinghamshire Police, with Goodwin PLC a creditable 2nd and Staffordshire Police proudly taking 3rd place on the podium.
The Corporate Games would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone connected with this great event at Trentham Gardens. Thank you for your support and hope to see you all involved in the UK Corporate Games Stoke On Trent and Staffordshire 2018 in June.
NB The Main Image was taken by Richard Redshaw LRPS