The ORS Int. is the official adjudicator of ocean rowing records for Guinness World Records


Storm puts Atlantic rowers in a spot


July 23 2004

Claire Hill, The Western Mail

A TEAM bidding to set a new record rowing across the Atlantic thought they had rowed more than 50 miles in 24 hours - but had only traveled a fraction of the distance.

The four men crewing the Pink Lady believed they had traveled 51 miles during 24 hours of rowing, only to discover yesterday that they were a mere six miles closer to their destination, Falmouth in Cornwall.

Welshman Pete Bray and fellow rowers Jonathan Gornall, Mark Stubbs and John Wills still have 1,160 miles left of the 2,100-mile challenge and the weather is proving to be an issue.

They had struggled to get as far north as they could to avoid bad weather but they have been forced to name the storm the Victor Meldrew (or the "I don't believe it" storm).

After setting off from St John's in Newfoundland, Canada, on June 30 they have managed to row 967 miles.

But bad weather has been against them from the beginning, and yesterday, their 22nd day, they found they had been effectively rowing on the spot. They decided to drift for a while with the parachute anchor before restarting their rowing efforts when the weather improved.

The men have been rowing around the clock in pairs for two hours at a time.

Despite the setbacks Mr Bray, from Bridgend, and his fellow rowers are confident that they will be able to make it back to Cornwall in time to break the world record.

Currently the fastest time for a North Atlantic Ocean row is 55 days, so they have 21 days to row 1,160 miles to come home champions of the sea and the inhospitable weather.