In case you missed it, back at the end of 2019 through Christmas and New Year 2020, I was part of a 5-man team that set a Guinness World Record for rowing the Atlantic – in fact it is three years since we set off from La Gomera on 12th December. Now I’ve signed up to do it all again, but this time in the Pacific.
The event is organised by the same people who did the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. But this time we start from Monterey, San Francisco and row to Hanalei Bay, Kauai Island in Hawaii. This is known as the mid-Pacific row and will be a similar time frame to the Atlantic row. We’re aiming to complete it in 35 days and to set another 5-man world record.
Three of our original team are back on board, Kevin Gaskell, Will Hollingshead and me. The other two from our team, Sam and Chris, have work commitments that mean they’re out of the country for much of the time. However, we have three new crew members, Adam and Tom, who also have experience from the Atlantic race, but in a bigger boat, and Harry who is a newcomer, but fit and keen.
While we’re all over the country from Birmingham, Bristol, London, Berkshire and Hampshire, we are all on a fitness programme to ensure we have the stamina and fitness to keep going for the race from start to finish.
We’re eagerly awaiting our new boat, which is being built by the same company that built our Atlantic craft. This should arrive by January so we can start rowing training in the sea – probably from Lymington.
Our original boat was sold after the Atlantic race, partly to balance the books as these boats are expensive, but also because we didn’t know if we were going to do another row so it made sense to let it go.
There’s plenty to do before we actually set off in June 2024.
- The website is www.theocean5.com and should be live by May this year.
- The fundraising and sponsorship package is in the planning stages
- We’re discussing a choice of charity to support
There were a number of knowledge-based courses that all rowers had to complete for Atlantic row, some of these will stand for the Pacific row, although Harry will need to complete all of these. Any additional courses required will be part of our schedule of preparation over the next year.
Watch this space for more updates!