Row4Ocean – World Record Attempt to row 2305nm – Africa to South America. Port of Departure: Dakar, Senegal, Africa – Port of Arrival: Paramaribo, Suriname, South America.
Team: Patrick Bol, Lewis Knollman,Andrew Ruinoff, Matt Wilds.
After two weeks at sea, the Row4Ocean team are approaching halfway in their attempt to break Atlantic rowing records and raise the awareness for plastic pollution in our oceans. The team is battling power issues to work their auto-pilot and precious water-maker. Today, Friday 28 December, the team past the 1000 miles rowed milestone, and is approaching the half way stage. Row4Ocean has kept up an average speed of 3.15 knots, which is ahead of the current world record for the route (3.06 knots, set by a team of five, skippered by Ralph Tuijn earlier this year).
The weather forecast supplied by Row4Ocean sponsor StormGeo is looking good, solid trade winds are forecast for at least the next week, which will raise ‘Year of Zayed’ average speed in their quest to reach Paramaribo, Suriname. However, the row is entering into a very strategic phase for the duration of the row, as ocean currents begin to make a big impact on the progress of the team. The North Brazil Current (NBC) can run at over a metre per second.
“We have been getting detailed weather and current data from StormGeo,” commented Nick Leggatt, on board ‘Supertramp’, shadowing ‘Year of Zayed’. “It is important that we have these predictions because the team need to plan along way in advance. ‘Year of Zayed’ is only travelling at about 3 knots and can only alter course by a maximum of 60 degrees, so the team need to look as far ahead as possible. Even now, over 1000 miles from the finish, the team need to position the boat so that they can reach Paramaribo, rather than get swept by the current and wind to another part of the coast. After 14 days, it seems that their bodies are getting accustomed to the physical hardship, but it is not just a physical challenge, it is also a mental one.”