Forty industry teams dodged the showers to compete in the 2008 Dragon Boat Challenge last week – raising more than £25,000 for charity.

Rain may have stopped play at Wimbledon but it would have taken more than a torrential downpour to dampen the enthusiasm of the rowers who competed in the 2008 Construction Industry Dragon Boat Challenge.

Forty teams representing every sector of construction dodged the raindrops to enjoy an exhilarating afternoon of racing at the 10th running of the event sponsored by Building, last Thursday at the West Reservoir in Stoke Newington, north London.

The final was won by Staces’ Aces for the second year in succession. Property consultant Stace recorded the fastest time of the day to beat & Gromit of Wallis Interiors.

Modus finished third and as half the rowers were female, picked up the prize for best mixed team. The developer also won a special award for raising £12,000 for charity. More than £25,000 was raised in total for Crash, the construction charity for the homeless.

Kiley Riley Parkeray dressed as a chain gang, complete with the prisoner numbers of famous felons such as Hugh Grant and Frank Sinatra

If there was a fancy dress award, first prize would have gone to Kiley Riley Parkeray, who competed as the Imperial Slaves (top left and above right), a chain gang complete with the prisoner numbers of famous felons, such as Hugh Grant and Frank Sinatra.

Dubious puns were in plentiful supply in the team names, with the likes of Dirty Oars (HLM), Chasing Amy (Safe Consulting’s play on the name of the construction company Amey) and What Are You Sinking About (M3 Consulting) taking to the water.

The latter name would have been appropriate for Team Rambo, aka the BBC and Arup, which managed to capsize their boat. An Arup engineer’s explanation of what went wrong can be seen at

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