The GB Row Challenge is a boat race with an edge: teams of rowers must plough the dangerous seas around the UK unassisted to win a cash purse of £100,000 prize money.
It’s already being described as the ‘world’s richest rowing race’, and so far 40 adventurers have signed up in teams to take part. With 2000 miles to cover across dangerous tides, hectic shipping lanes – not to mention race rules demanding that you make your own power from the sun and drinking water from the sea – it’s probably one of the most daring races too.
Organisers say that 15 boats will depart from Tower Bridge, London on June 1st and will take a clockwise route around the coast, heading west to Land’s End before turning north to John O’Groats via the Irish Sea. The £100,000 prize money will be awarded to the first team that beats the world record time of 26 days, 14 hours and 12 minutes set in 2005.
Polar explorer and mountaineer Clare Shouksmith is leading a mixed crew of three men and a woman in their ocean rowing boat, Pure Gym. She commented: “GB Row pushes the boundaries of extreme challenges – in fact, more people have walked on the moon than have successfully rowed around the Great British coastline!”
It costs £4000 to enter a team into the the GB Row Challenge 2013. Aside from the £100,000 prize money for breaking the circumnavigation record, there is also a £15,000 prize for the first crew back, £6000 for second place and £4000 for third. With 15 teams, and what is likely to be a high attrition rate, those are odds worth taking.
Find out more at www.gbrowchallenge.com