TEAMS from Appledore and Torridge were raising their oars in triumph at the annual bridge to bridge pilot gig race in the Taw and Torridge estuaries on Sunday. Appledore Men s A won the men s race from Bideford to Barnstaple, while bragging rights in the

TEAMS from Appledore and Torridge were raising their oars in triumph at the annual bridge to bridge pilot gig race in the Taw and Torridge estuaries on Sunday.

Appledore Men's A won the men's race from Bideford to Barnstaple, while bragging rights in the women's event went to Torridge Ladies. The Appledore crew completed the 9.5mile row in just one hour and 10 minutes, taking the lead from the off and staying in pole position to win the event for the third time in its four year history.

After the changeover in Barnstaple, Torridge raced to victory in the women's race, making a slightly shorter 7.5mile row back to Appledore in an hour and 18 minutes - despite wearing fancy dress!

Known as the longest and most gruelling race in the North Devon pilot gig calendar, the event is held each year by the Barnstaple Link Rotary Club to celebrate the opening of the Barnstaple's new downstream bridge. It is proving to be one of the most popular races in the pilot gig racing calendar according to one of the organisers, Len White. "We only had six boats for the inaugural race but since then word has spread and this year we have doubled it," said Len. The president of the Barnstaple Link Rotary Club, Keith Rogers, made the presentations.