Fab four row into history books

There is really only one word to describe the achievement of Angus Collins, Angus Barton, Joe Barnett and Jack Mayhew and that’s ‘absolutely awesome’ – OK that’s two.

Not only did our four heroes complete ‘the world’s toughest race’ – rowing non-stop from the Canary Islands to Antigua (that’s 3,000 gruelling miles) but they smashed the world record and have deservedly rowed themselves into the history books.

The boys led right from the start and completed the race in 37 days, nine hours and 12 minutes, beating the previous record by four days.

Called the Talisker Whiskey Challenge, the boys entered the competition determined to not only finish the race, but to claim the prize of doing it in the fastest possible time.

AJN Steelstock took the sponsorship lead by investing in the purpose-built nine-meter ocean going rowing boat that would be home to the ‘oarsome foursome’ for the duration of the crossing.

Combating heat, tropical storms, hallucinations, forty-foot waves and agonising pressure sores, the boys took it in turns to row in two-hour shifts and were greeted in English Harbour, Antigua, by relieved family and friends.

As far as fundraising challenges go, this surely, must rank among the toughest with the four school mates who called their team Ocean Reunion, aiming to raise £100,000 to be split between the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and the Teenage Cancer Trust.

Only a few days ago the boys encountered a monster tropical storm that turned into Hurricane Alex, one of the most powerful storms ever recorded.

Twenty-six teams put to sea in the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge, setting off from La Gomera in the Canary Islands on December 20th 2015.

Commenting, Courtney Bell, AJN Steelstock’s Finance Director, said: “We are so proud of the boys. They overcame all the hardships the sea could throw at them and worked tirelessly as a team to not only complete the challenge – and it really lives up to its billing as the world’s toughest race – but smash the previous record by miles.

“The only task left now for the boys is to turn the boat around and bring it back!”


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