After three years of preparation, Australia’s rowing world record holder, Andrew Abrahams, has only 65 nautical miles left to row of the mighty Atlantic Ocean, in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge that commenced on December 4, 2013 from San Sebastian De La Gomera.
Andrew is set to reach the finish line in the English Harbour of Antigua this Saturday morning (AEST) after rowing 5,000km (3,000 nautical miles) and surviving 58 long days at sea. This will see him achieve his world record attempt of becoming the fastest Australian to row solo and unassisted across the Atlantic to raise $500,000 for disadvantaged children in the community.
Andrew’s rowing connection also honours a family tradition. His fourth great grandfather, Abel Seaman Owen Cavanough rowed Governor Phillip to shore from the Flagship HMS Sirius and was the first man to set foot on Australian soil from the first fleet. It was without question that Andrew named his ocean race boat RV Owen Cavanough.
It’s no surprise that more people have been into space, or climbed Everest than have rowed the Atlantic. Hoping to cross the finish line in a world record time of 46 days, Andrew was faced with severe sickness for over two weeks. Alongside sleep deprivation, being turned over by 30ft waves, blisters, salt sores, sharks, dehydration, mental fatigue, weight loss, incorrect food supply for the voyage and a serious leg injury, its no wonder the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge is one of the toughest races on earth.
One man in a boat - .. ©
Andrew’s rowing skills are from many years rowing Surf Boats with Coolangatta Surf Life Saving Club, but when a wave threw him overboard, it was the custom made rope harness which he has permanently attached, that saved his life.
With 16 crews starting the race and only 12 crew set to finish, it takes a certain kind of person to keep going when faced with these challenges and Andrew has taken it in all in his stride.
'I am constantly reminded of the pain and suffering that the children and their families go through when illness or injury has struck a family member, so I use that energy to help me find the endurance to keep going. Knowing that every stroke counts towards finding that cure and helping ease the pain and suffering of so many kids,' said Andrew.
And to prove he is only human, Andrew is still craving a lemonade ice block and looking forward to seeing his family and friends the most.
'It’s great to hear the other teams are home and I can’t wait it to be my turn to row across the finish line for my charities and Australia!'
racetracker - .. ©
Over the last few days, Andrew said he has had a good chance to think about all the people that have got him through this challenge and all the great sponsors that have backed him. He would like to extend his appreciation to the major sponsors, Aurora Yacht Logistics, Logan City Council, Aussie Car Loans, Talisker Whisky and Hadassahs Hair and Beauty, who went above and beyond to make sure he firstly arrived at the start line and secondly provided the resources for him to cross the finish line.
'Andrew has shown so much dedication to the cause and we’re proud to be a part of it,' said the Director of major sponsor Aurora Global Logistics, Kane Bygrave.
Andrew is the co-founder of the Townsville to Cairns bike ride, which has raised $4.1 million for the Children’s Cancer Institute, and is the World Record Holder for being the fastest person in the world to row 1 million meters on a concept 2 rowing machine.
All proceeds raised will go directly to the charities supported by Lions including the Children’s Mobility Foundation, the Childhood Cancer Research Foundation, ALDAF and Couee Community. These much needed funds will buy wheelchairs and aids for the children, making a huge difference to their daily lives.
Follow Andrew’s updates on Facebook or visit his website www.adventure4acure.com
by Propel PR
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3:25 AM Tue 4 Feb 2014GMT
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