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Surrey and Hampshire men involved in transatlantic rowing challenge

Wight Lightning

7:01am 13th August 2017

Four British men, including two from Surrey and Hampshire, will take on what's described as the 'world's toughest row' this December.

Team Wight Lightning have entered the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, a 3,000 mile row across the Atlantic.

Starting from the town of San Sebastian in La Gomera (Canaries Island), it is expected to take them around two months to reach their destination, Nelsons Dockyard in English bay, Antigua.

The crew is made up of 59 year-old Mark Brownjohn from Worplesdon, 29 year-old Dan Warner from Bordon, 43 year-old Roger McCarthy from Berkshire and 23 year-old Will Whitehead from Scotland.

The daunting challenge of rowing 3,000 miles won't be the only thing on Dan's mind though, as he is getting married in October.

It is only once the crew reach Antigua that he will get to enjoy his honeymoon with his wife.

Wight Lightning

Roger on-board the Wight Lightning

Mark, who will most likely spend his 60th birthday in the middle of the Atlantic, told Eagle it's not a challenge for the faint-hearted: "You'll have fish trying to board the boat at night-time slapping you in the face.

"There has been stories over the past about big tuna fish slapping against the boat, marlin puncturing the sides of the boat and sharks trying to get in the boat.

"The only way to do it is to be as best prepared as you can and to be mentally prepared you have to think about what you're doing and think about your team mates as well.

"It's something that I can't really explain, to try and be mentally prepared, you either are or you're not."

So what about the boat? Roger talks us through the ins and outs of what will be their home for two months:


Over the two months they'll eat high calorie sachets of food to be mixed with boiling water, what Roger describes as like 'giant Pot Noodles'.

Despite being surrounded by it, there is also the problem of not having enough water to last the whole journey.

However as Roger explains, their 'water maker' will keep them well refreshed:


Not only are the team taking on a huge physical and mental challenge, they are also trying to raise as much money as possible for two charities; Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust and Ability Dogs 4 Young People.

The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust supports and empowers young people recovering from some of the traumatic events of cancer.

Meanwhile Ability Dogs 4 Young People have dedicated 'puppy parents' who train ability dogs to help young people with mental and physical disabilities such as cerebal palsy, autism and epilepsy.

Mark, Roger, Dan and Will are keen for any donations in support of their row, you can do so through the White Lightining website.


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