Four old school friends reunite to row Atlantic for charity

It’s described as the world’s toughest race but that isn’t stopping four intrepid school mates coming together to raise money for two charities by rowing 3,000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean.

Long-time school friends, Angus Collins, Jack Mayhew (25), Joe Barnett and Gus Barton (24) are currently preparing for the toughest challenge of their lives as they attempt to raise £100,000 for the Teenage Cancer Trust and the Cystic Fibrosis Trust by taking part in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

The gruelling race begins in the Canary Islands on 15th December 2015 and finishes 3,000 nautical miles later in Antigua. The four friends, who all went to Uppingham School, will row non-stop in a custom built boat and are aiming to complete the race in around 60 days.

Along the way they will face 40ft waves, hurricane strength winds and temperatures of up to 40 degrees, as well as suffering from bruised bodies, blisters, burns, fatigue and sleep deprivation as they work in shifts around the clock to overcome all the odds and raise money for two chosen charities.

Team member Angus Collins is no stranger to pushing himself to the limits and has nautical adventures in his blood. His grandfather is a world champion in the Flying Dutchman class, his parents were scuba diving instructors and his uncle is the defending world record holder in transatlantic rowing.

“More people have been into space or climbed Mount Everest than rowed the Atlantic”, said Angus. “It’s a huge challenge for all of us but when we think of the work that the Teenage Cancer Trust and the Cystic Fibrosis Trust does – and the people they help, we know it’s a very small token of our appreciation.”

“This really is an amazing challenge and you can hardly undertake something of this magnitude and not raise money for a good cause at the same time. It’s probably the ultimate test of physical and mental strength, but we’re determined to not only complete it but set a new world record for the fastest crossing – and achieve our target or raising £150,000 for the two charities.”

The journey, which will see the foursome consumer 1,680,000 calories (about 7,336 Big Mac’s), drink 2,880 litres of water and pull the oars over 1 million times, has been made possible by major sponsorship from AJN Steelstock Ltd, one of the leading stockholders in the Eastern Region.

Its funding has enabled the construction of a 28ft custom built ocean going rowing boat. Built by world leading boat manufacturers, Rannoch Adventure, the state-of-the-art boat has been named Jean Mary, and will be home to the team for the duration of the race storing all of the essential kit needed for the arduous journey.

The four friends are already training hard rowing hundreds of miles on the water and on dry land using rowing machines. To follow their progress, show your support, or to make a donation, visit their website at www.oceanreunion.co.uk or their Facebook page – www.facebook.com/atlantic.row.