The race got off to a sticky start on Sunday as the Maidenhead Sea Cadets struggled to empty the bag containing hundreds of bright yellow plastic ducks.
But they were soon bobbing along the Thames bill-to-bill as excited families crowded the banks to see if theirs would be the winner.
The annual event, which has been organised by the Lions club for more than 25 years, attracted hundreds of people to Ray Mill Island from 1pm to enjoy entertainment, lucky dips and the Lions Club train.
The outgoing Mayor for Windsor and Maidenhead, Cllr Asghar Majeed, started the race at 4.30pm with help from six-year-old Joshua Moxom.
He will step down as mayor today.
Cllr Majeed said: "It's a wonderful event which raises a lot of money for charities and it's a great day out for families."
The Maidenhead Sea Cadets were also celebrating after winning the Prince Philip Challenge Trophy.
The young boaters beat the Windsor Sea Cadets in a number of races, which took place from 3pm, including a rowing race, canoe relay and an assault course competition.
The event usually raises more than £5,000 but Lions Club spokesman Peter Skinner said the event was also about helping other charities.
He said: "Many local organisations have a platform and opportunity to raise much needed funds and awareness of their activities.
"There was a 25 per cent increase in stalls this year so even more local groups benefited."
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