This year’s Devizes to Westminster (DW) Canoe Team has made a very encouraging  start to the term. The first few weeks have seen them already move into unstable but fast racing K2s, despite the occasional capsize into the Wey’s freezing water. The focus now is on learning an effective paddling technique that they can maintain for the full 125 mile distance and building endurance. Slowly, but surely, the various ingredients necessary for this unique event are being developed to produce a team that promises to challenge Cranleigh’s impressive record in this event.

Sunday 15th January saw the paddlers and their parents gather for the annual ‘Supporter’s Presentation’, an evening for those who will be following the pairs by road along the course: feeding, watering and encouraging them as they go. The squad’s first race – an ‘in house’ event held on the River Wey from Guildford to Godalming on Saturday 4th February – will be their real test piece. With twelve miles to paddle and nine portages to negotiate, the team’s developing potential should be revealed for all to see.