3,000-nautical mile Atlantic rowing race

Men of Oar.
Men of Oar.

Ayton’s Robin Drysdale and his Men of Oar team-mates are nearing the halfway stage of their Atlantic Ocean rowing challenge.

They are three weeks into The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, rowing 3,000 nautical mile - completely self-supported - from the Canary Islands to Antigua.

The team have had daily challenges to contend with, says Robin from the mid-Atlantic: “To date we have broken and fixed the boat steering, the watermaker, our batteries and a rowing seat.

“The discharge of the batteries has probably been our biggest issue to overcome. Overuse of one of the batteries inhibited our ability to steer, navigate and make water.

“When we discovered the batteries weren’t charging we had to make some decisions: rig up a foot steering system and learn to use it in 15 foot swells and make our water with the electrical pump, or hand pump water and steer automatically.

“Through careful power management we have managed to recover the batteries ability to charge. We have also become adept at steering our boat by foot.

“We are now all used to life on board and have come to terms with the lack of privacy, the constant dampness of the cabins and the shift patterns.”

In 2016 Robin was diagnosed with bowel cancer and treated through surgery and chemotherapy inspiring him to take the Atlantic challenge and raise £250,000 for Bowel Cancer UK and Combat Stress.

Keep up to date on their progress at www.taliskerwhiskyatlanticchallenge.com