The Burnett River put on its most placid face under perfect skies last Saturday morning as dragon boat crews from throughout the region attended the first regatta of the Wide Bay series.
Bundaberg Dragon Boat Club hosted the event, and it came as no surprise that the home crew made its way through the round-robin racing to line up against the highly credentialed crew from 1770 in the final.
The two teams had been the standout performers during the preliminaries and in their lead-up race to the finals the stopwatches had to be consulted to one hundredths of a second to split the two teams with 1770 prevailing in a nail biter.
A similar close encounter was anticipated for the final and the two teams did not disappoint over the 200 metres sprint course.
By courtesy of a powerful start, 1770 was able to create a margin in the first 50 metres of the race. Bundaberg, to its credit really dug in and almost drew level with 1770 midway through the race.
However, the experienced 1770 crew maintained its composure and held its slender lead to the finish, beating Bundaberg by around one second.
The regatta attracted teams from Cooloola and Hervey Bay with another local entrant, Burnett River Dragons, rounding out the five teams.
Hervey Bay and Cooloola competed in the minor final, with the Bay crew too good for Cooloola.
Further rounds of the Wide Bay Regatta will be paddled over coming months, with each team hosting an event.