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A splashy night last night but we topped it off with an amazing sunrise. I was in a bit of a daze as the sun came up so when I saw a fin off the stern of the boat I wasn’t sure if I was hallucinating. I kept watching and then I saw it again. It started popping up a lot before ‘gasp’ it surfaced and we saw a 2ft dorsal fin – it was massive! I think it might have been a shark, but the water was dark and it was hard to see. At least it gave us something to talk about.

Yesterday was a 70 mile day and that is a very good distance for 24 hours, among our best. The boat seems to be doing particularly well in the rougher weather. The bad news is that the conditions have dropped significantly this morning and I reckon that we have lost a knot of speed. Never mind - the sun is out! Jenks chose to make the most of the weather and put in a naked row – amusingly he managed to be hit by the only wave of the day. As a result he is now covered in sea-salt and now has to spend the rest of the day dealing with all the horrible scratchy dry feeling until he can clean it all off.

I had an interview with BBC Wiltshire this morning and received a fairly comprehensive grilling but it was great fun. I also learnt the surprise news of our latest twitter supporter. Believe it or not, we have the endorsement of Gladiator’s famous lead actor, Mr Russell Crowe. 


Today is a no snack pack day - another consequence of capsizing was the loss of our waterproof food bag. The remaining stock is also getting dodgy. In one you will have a disappointing selection such as two tubes of jam and a fruit tube, in another it’s all Biltong and snickers bars – the best you could wish for.

Wildlife and things

On the 6- 8pm shift last night Scott was feeling a bit groggy and then suddenly felt a smack on the back of his head. Originally he thought that he had fallen asleep and banged his head but it turned out that he had been smashed by a flying fish. The beast was unconscious on the deck (the fish, not Scott!) and we chose to redeploy it as bait on our fishing line but to no avail. To help Scotty get over it I have him some fruit pastilles and a pat on the back. All of this was followed by a beard rub which seemed to get him back on track. Out bird watching is limited to Terence the Tern. He caught a fish the other day which was fab. Otherwise it is pretty desolate.

Our counterparts - Atlantic Polo

The Polo boys and us attempted to organise a laser party last night. Jenks spoke to them on the sat-phone and said that they sounded a bit drained. We tried to cheer things up with our laser party - we have a laser pointer with a range of about 20km which is designed for warning ships – anyway, when it came to the crunch we couldn’t see anything. The Polo boys don’t have a proper working water-maker and they have battery problems. Respect to them as they are hand and foot steering all the way. They have no auto-helm at all and in rough seas they need a rower to abandon duties in order to hand steer. I know its grim because we have been doing it too!

The end?

It feels like a countdown now. The 900s were horrid, 8 and 7 went quickly. It feels like we are winding down – and getting to the end. In some ways its exciting (family) but I’m also thinking what the hell do I do when I get to the end? Getting back to normality is not that appealing! The overriding feeling is excitement about seeing friends and families, eating bacon and egg sandwiches, having fresh food, a salad and a shower. We have so many people to thank but I want to mention Dad today because the seat that he adapted for me has been outstanding. When I hear the stories from Neil Heritage, my predecessor in the 2011 race I am all the more grateful that we have had a solid reliable bit of kit. It makes all the difference to have a supportive family AND  a supportive seat!


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After a frustrating last 24 hours or so we began today with slow conditions and not much visibility. It was quite squally, with little rain showers coming and going, but things cleared quite abruptly around 8am and suddenly we could see land. After being hidden in the mist it appeared out of nowhere and it seemed really close! This last stretch was totally different to the first half of the race. For so much of this crossing the weather has been horrific, I have never experienced anything like this. Yesterday morning at 8 am marked the first time in the entire race that we had a full 24 hours out of full foul weather gear and today is also the first day that an equipment failure would not be a cause for emotional devastation. I always thought that we would make it, but equipment failures could have slowed us down a lot. The thought of breakages always kept us on edge. But now we can finally enjoy the realisation that WE HAVE DONE IT!!!!!!!!

Read More | posted on Jan 21, 2014


It feels great to count down the hours and the miles. It is a big morale boost to know that we are almost there. For most of the crossing I had felt confident that we would make it but we did have a few scares. When the auto-helm broke I did worry that we would be down to one rower for the whole crossing. One rowing and one hand-steering would have been a horrible routine. Luckily we managed to fix it. But the most important bit of equipment is my leg - it has never let me down.

Read More | posted on Jan 20, 2014


Hard as it is to believe, this is my final blog! It has been a moment to reflect on an extraordinary 7 weeks at sea and an even more extraordinary group of people. By that I mean not just the guys in the boat, but the many wounded persons that they represent. I have been thinking a lot about what this team has achieved and what we hope others can achieve. This project has been about setting a huge challenge, committing wholeheartedly to it and then facing every challenge head on in pursuit of our goal. There have been no excuses only a choice to live this experience to its fullest and to take a positive attitude to all things. I hope that we have demonstrated that it is not what people see in you but what you go on to do that counts. I want to thank to all those who have personally supported me – you know who you are. There were a few people who said it could not be done. Oh dear… you will have to kiss my nappy-rash!

Read More | posted on Jan 19, 2014