The Great River Race

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Watch more than 300 boat crews take part in the Great River Race – a river marathon over a 21-mile course past many famous London landmarks. Read More


The Great River Race is London’s alternative river race. It’s essentially a marathon on the river, when more than 300 crews from all over the world tackle a challenging 21-mile course past many famous London landmarks.

Any level of competitor can take part, whether they’re in it for fun in fancy dress or serious sportsmen and women who are in it to win it. Any traditional-style, coxed boat, propelled by a minimum of four oars or paddles and without sliding seats or riggers, can also be used.

The race starts at London Docklands and ends at Ham in Surrey. The winners receive the Challenge Trophy of The Company of Watermen & Lightermen of The River Thames and become the UK Traditional Boat Champions.

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