Wanaka’s Kahu Youth annual cardboard boat race returned for its 12th year on Saturday.

Crowds cheered on valiant sailors as they launched premade cardboard vessels into the chilly 10-13degC lake.

Ten teams competed for the five prizes up for grabs: fastest boat to complete the course, best themed boat, most outrageous boat, Commodore’s choice and the Titanic ‘‘Best Sink’’ trophy.

A designated boat-building day was held at Kahu Youth, as part of the youth service’s holiday programme, prior to the event.

Earlier this year, the charity was nominated as primary tenant for the new community hub at the old Wanaka Mitre 10 building in Reece Cres.

Leading the field . . . The Flying Mullet team charges ahead of opponents Black Pearl during the Kahu Youth Annual Cardboard Race in Wanaka.

Funds raised from the cardboard race will go towards fitting out the refurbished building.

Kahu Youth operates from the former Wanaka Physiotherapy building in Russell St, near the town centre.

Boat race participants were encouraged to create their own Givealittle page for the organisation as part of the fundraiser.

The youth service had delivered more than 2440 drop-in service hours, 600 hours in after-school programmes, 300 hours in youth mentoring and 58 days of holiday programmes, in the past year.