Rocky the Referee stood on the Biggleton Bridge, where he could oversee the annual boat race. No one else was allowed up here during the race to influence him with their pleas and tears. The winner would be determined by a combination of skill and luck, helped along by the ephemeral hand of fate. If there were any shenanigans, Rocky was in control of the distribution of the proper penalties. Several years ago, someone had tried to rig the race, but Rocky had dealt with them harshly, though fairly, and nothing similar had happened since.
Naturally, it was understandable that people became a little emotional over the annual boat race. The losers were promptly killed and eaten at the Annual Biggleton Barbecue.