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Badgers Ahoy!

May 28, 2009

To raise money for the Trust, we decided to enter a team into the Dragon Boat Race at Sherborne Castle Country Fair on 25th May. To read about our antics on the day, click on the link….

The Barmy Badgers!

The Barmy Badgers!

Dragon Boat racing is steeped in Chinese mythology and has been around for many thousands of years. At the country fair, each crew is composed of a drummer and 16 paddlers who race in Chinese-style Dragon Boats over a 250 metre course. Popular legend has it that because of the racing, Chinese dragons would bring rain however we found quite the opposite! After a miserable start to the day and grumbles from the team about how soggy it was, the sun broke through and it turned into a glorious day.


Best Outfit Award goes to...

We arrived on time, kitted out in black and white ready to be transformed into badgers. Emily and I (Jess) got artistic with the face paints and together we sponged away, morphing the team into the…“Barmy Badgers!”

Badgers ready

Badgers ready

Once we had our war paint on, the team spirit really kicked in and we were raring to go. Good job, as we were the first race! Into the boats we climbed and we were off on our first race against Elvis and the Hound-dogs making a complete pig’s (sorry, badger’s) ear of shouting 1,2 in time with paddling, a task that sounds so simple, but a very different story on the water with the adrenaline rushing.



On observing the winning teams, we worked out that good timing and synchronized paddling was in fact the secret to a faster boat and we put that into practice on our next race. We triumphantly won our second heat and were screaming “GO BADGERS!” and waving our oars around like mad people. In fact, we were so great that some volunteers from another team (called in to make up our numbers) asked to be made honourary badgers for the last race. I felt great pride in christening the latest additions to our clan by painting badger stripes on their faces under the DWT tent.

Taking the lead

Taking the lead

The day had turned into a scorcher, and we sat on the bank watching the excitement under the majestic shadow of Sherborne Castle, eating ice cream and drinking fruit smoothies whilst discussing tactics and technique for the final round.

Team under the tent

Team under the tent

Unfortunately, the pep talk did not work and we lost our last race, however, we beat our fastest time and completed the 250m in just 1 minute and 17 seconds!!! We were placed 14th out of 20 but were so chuffed we didn’t come last that we went around for the rest of the day with happy faces.

We improved each time

We improved each time

Once the racing was finished, Emily, James, Anna and I went to explore the rest of the fair. Attractions included the beer tent, the crazy otter lady, laughing at kids trying to control angry sheep, an egotistical quad bike rider and James’ top secret Portland Sheep CD – what’s it all about? You will have to let us know James 🙂

Overall, we had a great laugh and we all agreed that we would definately be up for entering a team next year. Be it Outrageous Otters perhaps, or Dangerous Dormice, you have a whole year to think about it!


Jess x

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Steve permalink
    May 28, 2009 9:13 pm

    Sounds great! Put my name down for next year – and AP will join in as well.

    Great work Jess!

  2. Alastair permalink
    June 4, 2009 12:25 pm

    Well done the Barmy Badgers, they look well set to win next year – though AP will probably stay in the pub!

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