A team of Cornish dads planning an epic 3000-mile charity row in a boat less than 30 foot long have been given a haven of support by Mylor Yacht Harbour.
The Atlantic Seamen, who aim to raise hundreds of thousands of pounds for the Urology Foundation and the Children’s Hospice Southwest, have been given a safe dry berth for their boat at Mylor’s marina and use of the harbour’s facilities during their training for the Talisker Whiskey 2018 Challenge.
Cornwall-based friends Andrew Berry, Jon Davies, Tim May and Robert Spence will set off from the Canary Islands in December 2018, rowing 24 hours a day for more than a month as they cross the ocean to Antigua.
“The challenge these guys are undertaking is immense and their training regime is gruelling enough, so anything we can do to make it that bit easier and more convenient we are very glad to do,” says Mylor Yacht Harbour’s Marina Manager Culum Matheson. “Here at Mylor we are sponsoring the Atlantic Rowers ‘in kind’ with our berthing and harbour facilities – and we’d urge the community to get behind them with sponsorship and support as they raise money for these two brilliant charities.”
The team, all keen sportsmen in their 40s, will be leaving behind their families including eleven children between them when they set off on what Talisker calls the World’s Toughest Row. Once they leave the island of La Gomera they will do rowing shifts, in pairs, of two hours on, two hours off, until they reach their final destination in the West Indies.
“What we’re doing now is getting ourselves as super-fit and as experienced with the boat as we can – and that means getting out on the water every day if possible or into the gym if not,” says Jon Davies. “We’re all working and we’ve all got families so it’s a massive commitment: being able to just pop down to Mylor, launch the boat, jump in and off on the water to train has been an enormous boost and we are extremely grateful to the Yacht Harbour team for all their help and support.”
Andrew Berry adds, “Being based at the Mylor Marina also increases our profile and people are always coming over to see what we’re up to or wish us well – and sometimes that translates into more sponsorship which is fantastic!”
The team recently won a vote of support from comedian and TV presenter Stephen Fry, who is being treated for Prostate Cancer, and who posted about the Atlantic Seamen on Twitter:
If the team’s support for the Urology Foundation is of UK-wide importance, their connection with the Children’s Hospice South West is much closer to home: Jon Davies’ nephew and his family are receiving on-going help from the Little Harbour Hospice in St Austell.
As a team the biggest challenges these Atlantic Seamen currently face are fitting training into their busy lives – and blisters. Once they set off they can expect extreme fatigue and everything the elements and nature can throw at them.
Find out more about their challenge, their charities and how to help or sponsor at http://atlanticseamen.com/ or their Facebook page which includes a promo video made for them at Mylor by Steve Strachan of Southwest Sky Visions and where supporters will be able to follow the journey.