VIDEO AND PICTURES-Sidmouth pancake race

Dukes retain Top Tossers trophy in Sidmouth pancake race

IN a close-run finish, Dukes has, for the third year running, won Sidmouth Pancake Race.

Organised by Sid Valley Rotary Club and held in Old Fore Street on Tuesday, the four-strong team beat a well-practiced Fudges Flippers from the Anchor Inn to become Top Tossers for 2012.

The Dukes team – Ben Gibbs, Dan Colson, Clare Campbell and Tom Wheelan, celebrated by opening their champagne prize.

Tom, captain, said: “We have two who play rugby and a regular runner. It was a very close final, under a metre. We will clean the trophy and hang it up.”

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They dedicated the race to colleague Helen Johnson, who was unable to take part.

Hotelier, Jo Seward, said: “I am delighted, they are keen and competitive and were fighting to get into the team. In the end I had to pick the four fastest. Tom’s run on the last leg clinched it.”

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She said she was pleased the pancake race had become a fixture in Sidmouth’s spring calendar.

Other adult teams competing were Brend Hotels, Rotary Runners, Team Taste; who wore ice cream costumes, Hayman’s Flippers and Gilbert Stephens.

The adult races followed a well-supported series of children’s races, with 29 youngsters, aged two to 11, competing for chocolate bar prizes.

First winner of the day was Max Turner, 11, from Haddenham, Cambridgeshire, on holiday with his family in Sidmouth.

He said: “It was fun. The girl next to me and I had a close race, I just got my pancake flicking right.”

Sisters Ellie and Lorna Puddicombe of Cheese Lane, Sidmouth, and friend Grace Oxley, three next week, raced against one another in one heat, with Ellie, five, complete with sunglasses, winning.

Youngest entrant was Evie Mae Fudge, two, granddaughter of Trevor Fudge, landlord of the Anchor, and wife Denise.

Denise said: “I hope she takes part for many more years to come.”

A street collection raised �93.13, made up to �100 by a donation, and the �16 profit from entry fees, means �116 will go to Rotary International’s Polio Plus charity.

PCSO Jay Pepper and St John Ambulance were on hand and pancakes and audio system were provided by the Anchor.

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