Photograph: Werner Schmidt

Friday, December 6, 2013

The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge is on!

Team “Inspirational Friends”, 23-year-olds Lauren Morton and Hannah Lawton, two of the four women who are rowing across the Atlantic right now in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

It has been called the toughest race on earth – the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, which started on Wednesday, 4 December, from San Sebastian in La Gomer, the Canary Islands, to the Harbor of Antigua, in the West Indies, a distance of roughly 2,600 nautical miles (3,000 miles/4,828 km).

Sixteen boats started with crews from four countries: Great Britain, Sweden, Australia and Spain. There were crews with solo rowers up to crews with five people on board:

Solo – two boats from Australia and Sweden;
Pairs – five crews from Great Britain, three from Sweden and one from Spain;
Trio – one crew from Great Britain;
Fours – three crews from Great Britain;
Five – one crew from Great Britain.

Four women are competing this year, the pair Hannah Lawton and Lauren Morton in team “Inspirational Friends”, and Jane McIntosh and Liz Beauchamp who are rowing in the Royal Air Force four team “Atlantic Forces” with Warren Burns and Howie Raw.

The media coverage for this race, at least in Great Britain, has almost entirely concentrated on the British crew “Row2Recovery” with Cayle Royce, Scott Blaney, Mark Jenkins and James Kayll. Royce was injured in 2012 whilst serving in the British Army in Afghanistan. He stepped on an explosive device and had to have both his legs amputated above the knee, and suffered facial scarring and multiple amputations to the fingers of his left hand. Blaney suffered an above-the-knee amputation and soft tissue injuries from a bomb whilst conducting operations in Afghanistan in 2007. Blaney and Royce will row with Captain James Kayll of the Light Dragoons and Captain Mark Jenkins, who serves with the Royal Army Medical Corps as a Physiotherapy Officer.

Here is a video clip of the brave men in the “Row2Recovery” crew:

HTBS wishes all the teams the best of luck in their endeavour to cross the Atlantic Ocean. 

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