Windermere Hosts Annual Powerboat Race

More than 200 people were in attendance at Lake Windermere to see the powerboat racing earlier this month.

Commodore’s Race Day, organised by the Windermere Motor Boat Racing Club, played host to the event, with 15 powerboats racing around a mile stretch of race course.

Racing in the lake district

Alongside the regular club racers were members of the Lancashire Power Boat Club and fellow racing enthusiasts from across the UK, including participants from the south coast.

The event within the bay just south of Storrs Hotel, was played out in difficult weather conditions, as the wind hit up to 20mph during parts of the race. But crowds were not deterred from the race action, as Dave James and Linsey Fairhurst came in as winners of the Commodore’s Day prize.

Commodore Roy Pugh presented the award, while Windermere Motor Boat Racing Club (WMBRC) has thanked the lake rangers for their co-operation and assistance on the day, along with the Osprey Rescue crew and the Trust Medical Service.

History of powerboat racing at Windermere

Powerboat racing has been happening on Windermere since the end of the First World War, but it was not until October 24, 1925 that a group of enthusiastic motor boat drivers founded the WMBRC.

With the aim of ‘promoting motor boat racing and regulating safety on the lake’, the club is still involved to this day as the WMBRC celebrates its 91st year – though there have not been races every single year due to enforced breaks from the Second World War and the addition of a speed limit on the lake in 2005.

Bowness Bay was the initial home of racing on Windermere, but it moved south in 1950 after the club purchased Broad Leys, an Arts and Crafts building designed by CFA Voysey for a Yorkshire Industrialist.

When the speed limit came into force in 2005, WMBRC took its racing to Ramsden Dock in Barrow, where the majority of the race days still take place. However, after meetings with local parish councils and the Lake District National Park Authority, exemptions were granted for racing to take place once again on Windermere for the Regatta and the Commodore’s Race Day a year later.

This year’s race did not disappoint, and it is anticipated that there will be an even greater turnout next year.