A WIDNES club crew netted a spectacular win on the River Mersey in a unique race featuring vintage fishing boats.
The decline of the shrimping industry in Morecambe Bay has seen the boats - many of which are more than 100 years old - becoming redundant.
But their owners have turned to sailing them and contest the Golden Prawn annually.
The craft are known as 'nobbies' - a colloquial name for rough wood, reflecting their often primitive construction.
This year's victorious boat is owned and skippered by Tony Wright from Penketh.
It had Tony Blunt from Widnes, as helmsman with Liverpudlian crewmen Steve Lawson and Casey Ouwejan completing the team.
All from West Bank Boat Club.
The boat - named Jean in memory of its owner's wife - isn't an old vessel but based on a former sailing lifeboat now in a museum at Lancaster.
A mould was taken of the William James Priestley, a former sailing lifeboat and shrimper, and the replica was built of fibreglass at Fidlers Ferry boat yard - by Wright, 66, and fellow enthusiasts.
Berthed and maintained at Spike Island, it took two years to build and first won the Golden Prawn in 2000, the year after it was completed.
'But we only won the small boat class last time and this time we were overall winners,' explained Wright.
The race draws competitors from across the region, including the North West, North Wales and the Isle of Man.
'The race starts opposite the Albert Dock and we go up river on the tide,' added the winning skipper.
'We just get to the first marker before the tide eases off and shoot across to Tranmere and back to Duke's Buoy.
'The course is not all that long but takes about one-and-a-half hours.
'The conditions were good for us because it was a very light wind.
'That's why we won. The boat is only light - when it's heavy water we hit the waves and we stop a bit whereas the heavier boats just plough through them.'
The boat is 28ft while some of the opposition crews are manning 40ft vessels.
Wright added: 'A lot of boats from Widnes used to go shrimping.
'Another fellow from Spike Island, the late Harry Broomfield won the race three times in succession out of Spike Island in 1983, 1984 and 1985.
'So were are only keeping the tradition up.'