Scientists declare ‘Boaty McBoatface’ contest a success

LONDON (AP) — There’s no sinking feeling for the scientists who inadvertently gave the world Boaty McBoatface. In fact, they’re buoyant.

The leader of Britain’s Natural Environment Research Council says its name-the-ship competition that drew global attention when it was won by a jokey moniker was “an incredible success.”

Council officials were grilled by lawmakers Tuesday about the contest, which invited the public to help name a new polar research vessel.

Boaty McBoatface drew 124,000 votes, more than three times its nearest rival. Despite the vote, the vessel was christened Sir David Attenborough in honor of the naturalist and broadcaster.

Research council chief executive Duncan Wingham said that far from being an embarrassment, the contest was “an astonishingly great outcome for us. In addition, it has put a smile on everybody’s face.”

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