A team of four amateurs have won an endurance race dubbed the world’s toughest row in record time – crossing the Atlantic in under 30 days.
The London-based Four Oarsmen were among 25 teams taking part in The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge which saw crews row from La Gomera in the Canary Islands bound for Antigua in the Caribbean.
The crew – Dicky Taylor, George Biggar, Peter Robinson and Stuart Watts – finished their feat at just after 2am GMT on Saturday morning, having rowed in two-men, two-hour shifts for 2,644 nautical miles (3,042 miles) over the past 29 days and 15 hours.
The friends were expecting to take 40 days to complete the row – but families of the crew had to rebook flights to greet them as they progressed ahead of schedule.
Mr Biggar – a lawyer at Taylor Wessing – said: “We did this for Mind and for Spinal Research – two causes that are hugely close to our hearts and very important to us. It was absolutely astounding to see the amount of support for these charities we’ve helped raise from friends, family, loved-ones and people we’ve never even met.
“When we were really hitting the wall, that’s what kept us going: the encouragement of our supporters, and the knowledge that we were making such a difference for two very important charities.”
The group chose Mind in memory of Mr Biggar’s mother Anne Fisher and Spinal Research in support of Mr Robinson’s friend Ben Kende, once a rising star of Hong Kong rugby, who suffered a spinal cord injury while representing the territory at the Asian Junior Championship in August 2010.
Some 25 teams comprised of competitors from 16 countries have taken part in the race, which was completed in 35 days, a record time, by Anglo-American quartet Latitude 35 in 2016.