Paddling up to the challenge

Canoeists from Dauntsey’s School are amongst those taking part in an Easter weekend race that’s known as the Canoeists’ Everest

A squad of 14 lower-sixth pupils from Dauntsey’s School are in training for the gruelling 125-miles Devizes to Westminster Canoe Race, known as the “Canoeists’ Everest”. This year the school team will be raising money for CALM (Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Movement).

The team has been training since January. With the race held, as always, on Good Friday, they began training on the Thames with four weeks to go.

Sam Moore, head of adventure education at Dauntsey’s, said: “Training on the Thames gave the squad invaluable paddling experience. They learnt how to work as a team, form a pack in the fastest flowing part of the river, share the lead and take advantage of the draft from the boat in front to reduce effort. 

“As day two progressed, they had to dig deep to find the reserves of energy needed to get them to the end of the course. Everyone went home tired but with a great sense of achievement that they had paddled more than fifty miles in just two days. The training weekend was a great taster of what’s in store with the real race which is more than twice that distance.”

The Devizes to Westminster race starts at Devizes Wharf on Good Friday from 8am.


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