Its time for resolutions :)
Feet nicely rested and the sleep in being well deserved and much needed after a busy day of providing the 2018 New Years Day Raft Race and fun day at the Narrows Bar & Restaurant.
The weather on the day started with non stop showers which had us pleading to the weather gods to ease up and ensure the day would not be a damp one. The event was still going ahead regards of rain or not, after all the rafters were going to get wet anyway. Thankfully it did stop and the sun appeared during intervals and the typical Falklands wind staying away for the day.
Running around loading vehicles, unloading vehicles was the first order of the day as well as pulling a very sick and sore Richard Bonner out of his bed (the New Years Eve antics the night before playing its toll with him ha ha). Setting up of the BBQ and Face Painting at the Narrows followed by running around Town getting items that were missed off the list, no matter how organised you are there is always something missed. Thankfully K4 was open for the much needed Tomato Ketchup and mustard! With the Narrows ready for the end of the Raft Race it was off to register all the rafts and their crazy crews.
Registration as per usual was at the Bravo Slip and on arrival we were greeted with a crime scene as the RFIP aka CSI Stanley had gone the full hog and setup a murder scene on the green next to the B-Slip for onlookers. It would appear the victim had lost their life by stabbing just as they were to open up a can of bud......investigations appear to be still ongoing as the culprit is still at large. MPC rafts appeared with what looked to be a warship sitting atop a trailer! The Sprock.....ahem...The Rocket a new raft that we had never seen the like of before in a raft race appeared as well from MPC. Much debate was had with rafters adamant that this was the existing Sprocket Rocket from days of yore that had wiped the floor with all other competitors. We were informed this was not the case, did we believe it, of course not! Unveiling their sail, the colours and symbol caught the eye of onlookers...just check out the picture below to make up your own opinions but yes you are correct they were targeted on the day and the team had only realised the connection when raising the sail! All it needed was the symbol (looking much like a sun) to be have been coloured yellow and all hell would have broken loose. We can safely say that much banter was head on the day with The Rocket team who took it all in good form. The hole in their raft was not of course in any way linked to sabotage.
With all rafts registered they were informed to move their trustee steeds into the water and onto the starting line. Some rafts had been tested rigorously before the day to ensure they would not sink whereas others were lashed together at the last minute and others were built long before but not even water tested. Thankfully all floated with no losses throughout the race and a first for a Falklands Xtreme Raft Race. Even the very small HMS Harry designed by the FIC team did not fall apart this year and made it very proudly to the end of the race and would you believe it to a 3rd place finish! I had to eat humble pie as was sure it would not survive the day, however I like to call it motivational tactics which appears to have worked ;) The Race started off with the Speedwell blowing the horn to start and the rafts were off. HMS Harry was lucky not to have been sunk by its own support boat at the start as it promptly drove straight over them. The Rocket pulled away easily from the main pack and I believe their leaking raft pushing them to complete the race as fast as they can, in 15 minutes to be precise....a record we are not sure of and something that may be disputed by the previous Morrison teams. However for a Falklands Xtreme Raft Race a record none the less.
With the Rocket at the end and waiting some time for the other rafts to make a finish line appearance they were rightly bombarded by support boats and jet skis, something which pleased the spectators nicely. Second to finish was the other MPC team Ships and Giggles on their warship with mounted water cannon, which unfortunately was only used to scare the opposition as it failed to work, flour bombs however were effective. Spectators and tourists moved to the Narrows for a BBQ feast, live music and much drink as they waited for the final rafts to make the finish line. And as mentioned HMS Harry with their crew of 2 (the smallest in the race) pushed on with determination to finish 3rd with The Johnny Rook and G+M Construction battling for 4th spot. At one point it looked as if it was going to be a photo finish. I must add it was amazing to see G+M Construction finish as to begin with they had one oar between 3! The other 2 I think were to be motivational speakers for the one rower. Oars however arrived late on at the start. CSI Stanley brought up the rear and claimed the wooden spoon but nothing can take away their spirit on the day.
The day was completed with everyone enjoying live music, drink and food at the Narrows. The Xtreme team of Laura Bennett, Alex 'Sponge Bob Square Pants' Lang, Priscilla Morrison-Betts, Mari-ann Clarke, Samantha Chapman and Richard Bonner. Not forgetting Holly and Cameron Bennett and Luke Gilbert for running around with the donation bucket during the day. £507.51 raised on the day which was down slightly on last year but only by a few quid and we simply put this down to the fact that the weather was just not as good as it was last time around. Pete King and his band kept the crowd jumping and people tapping their feet as well as some dodgy singing from the crowd. Zim Harmonies turned up to a loud cheer and as per usual with their unique sound captured the audience and had them clapping, cheering and dancing the day away. A cracking day had by one and all and as always a great way to bring in the New Year.
All of this would not have been possible without the assistance of FIC who provided hot dogs, rolls and buns, FIMCO for the discounted burgers, the Narrows Bar and Restaurant for providing the venue on the day, The POD Gift Shop for the design and production of the prizes and to all those who helped in one way or another from support boats, helpers, musicians, sponsors you know all you all are and we cannot thank you enough for yet again supporting another New Years Day Raft Race.
Now its time to take the decorations down, push 2017 into the cupboard and open the doors to 2018. Here's looking forward to a busy year of ball hockey, adventure parks and planning for the next raft race, of which we hope will have a whole new look to it...so keep your eyes and ears open for developments on this one.
Thankfully I am not one of those unlucky people having to try and get back to normality and have 1 more week of relaxation before joining the rat race one again. So I shall get to that relaxing right now and wish you all a very Happy New Year!