Coming down to the wire, only seconds separated tubs one and two. But in the end, it was Great Estates’ Robbie Kelm emerging victorious.
Kelm and Dr. Lloyd Westby, in the Penticton Regional Hospital tub, battled it out in the final of the A division in the fifth Summerland Yacht Club Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race, Saturday at Powell Beach Park in Trout Creek.
“The conditions were great compared to last year,” said Kelm after the race. “The biggest things is your legs start falling asleep with how you’re crouching and stuff. Hundred per cent we’ll be back next year, it was a blast.”
Runner up Westby added: “It was really fun to have a couple boats really neck-and-neck, but I didn’t quite get the fine-tuning done as I would have liked.
“It’s kind of painful. It really is rough, even on a day like today, a flat day, it still jostles you a lot.”
This year was far better than the 2018 event where many of the tubs, including the doctor’s, overturned in the windy, and very smoky conditions.
This was the final event of a five-year fundraising program for the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation, which is hoping to reach $120,000.
At this stage, according to Jim Cavin of the Summerland Yacht Club, which organizes the event, it hasn’t been decided if the races will continue.
There are thoughts about possibly combining it with another summer event.
The Great Estates tub has won at least three of the A event races in the five years including 2018.
B champ this time around was Brian Bolding of Peachland, his second victory in four tries.
“Controlling the boat, that’s the whole thing,” he said after running up and ringing the finishing bell on the beach.
The total amount raised is still being tabulated.
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