It is said more people have been into space or climbed Everest than have rowed the Atlantic
The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge
In 1966, Sir Chay Blyth and John Ridgeway performed their legendary open-boat row across the Atlantic Ocean in English Rose III. The trip took 92 days and it laid the foundation for the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. Since 1997 this ocean rowing race has attracted the brave and intrepid to pit themselves against the elements and race the 3000 miles from La Gomera, Canary Islands, to English Harbour, Antigua. More people have been into space than have rowed the Atlantic Ocean, and it is rightly considered to be one of the toughest challenges on the planet.
The race begins on December 12th, with up to 40 teams participating from around the world. Rowers have to cope with blisters, salt rashes, sleep deprivation and rowing in two-hour shifts around the clock for weeks on end, facing all the raw elements of the Atlantic Ocean. Boats are typically seven meters long and just under two meters wide, with only a small cabin for protection against storms. All boats are equipped at the race start, and cannot take any repair, help or food and water during the crossing, yet all boats are professionally and reliably built to sustain the full race.
Our boat is a Rannoch Adventure R45, proven to be the most successful ocean rowing boat on the planet. She has done two successful Atlantic Ocean crossings with Team Wight Lightening and Team Astro to Atlantic in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge 2017 and 2018 respectively.
“You can never cross the ocean, until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore”
COXLESS CREW | PACIFIC OCEAN CROSSING 2015
Bashed hands Salt Sores Sleep deprivation Rowing in the heat Sun stroke Sleeping, cooking and rowing in a 28ft boat Dangerous wildlife Storms and huge waves Eating the same dehydrated food Blisters No shower or toilet
Leaving sight of land Living in a confined space Personal fears Missing loved ones Lack of home comforts
HOW WE WILL PREPARE
Nutrition is going to be important before the row whilst we are undertaking out training but also during as well. We are all very different, some with food intolerance’s and different requirements.
Rowing the Atlantic is very physically demanding. Nutrition plays a pivotal role in fuelling the body to meet the energy demands of such a challenge and to aid recovery in between each rowing segment. The team will be consuming over 6000 calories per day and the foods will have to be nutrient dense, light weight and balanced to pack in the energy requirements needed. Hydration will also be important for the team, as being dehydrated could impair their performance in both their training and the Atlantic row.
The team will be following a training plan designed to help them be physically prepared for the arduous rowing regime on the Atlantic which will include rowing 2 hour shifts with little rest and sleep in between. Their training plan will comprise of strength, aerobic and flexibility training. The team will be monitored throughout their training to make sure that they reach optimum fitness.
Why “How’s the training going?” Isn’t an easy answer!
RYA Essential Navigation & Seamanship and RYA Day Skipper
RYA Sea Survival
RYA Short Based Marine Radio (VHF)
Mactra Marine Water maker Course
RYA First Aid at Sea
Ocean Rowing Course
Many lake and coastal sessions lie ahead of us.
Trailering the boat around the country side is a feat itself.
Promo video showing the girls out in the double getting some mileage in.
First lake training session, seeing how the steering works, first time we all rowed together.
Lake training allows us to practice living aboard without the added pressure of the boat heaving around, tides, shipping etc. We can purely concentrate on syncing the rowing, using the jetboil to make food, getting used to clipping on and off, shift patterns and living in a tiny space.
Life onboard is going to be very different at night, shapes appear in the dark, waves come from nowhere, loneliness on the oars, hallucinations, navigation lights and buoys to recognise around the coastal waters, not to mention just moving around a boat which is bouncing around.
The race rules require us to spend time at sea including a night onboard. We hope to do many of these in the build up to the race so everything is second nature, nothing is scary and we have tweaked everything to be the best we can as a crew, the equipment and our beautiful boat.