Team ExtraOARdinary, our intrepid alumnae rowers, are now more than two thirds of the way there as they take part in the world's toughest row, the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.
LEH Senior Rowing Coach Abby Johnston, Class of 2007, and Charlotte Irving, Class of 2008, along with friend Kat Cordiner set out from Le Gomera, in the Canary Islands, on December 14 2021 to row 3,000 miles unsupported across the Atlantic Ocean to Antigua.
They have been rowing continuously ever since on a punishing schedule, taking turns of two hours at the oars, followed by a mere hour’s sleep, on repeat.
Each team member will row more than 1.5 million strokes over the course of the challenge. “We’re exhausted, but in good spirits,” says Abby.
At the time of writing they have 876 nautical miles left to go and are currently predicted to complete the epic undertaking on 26 January, meaning they are still in the running to break the world record for the fastest row across the Atlantic by three women.
They have battled sea sickness, aching muscles and callouses, but have managed to keep up their blistering pace. They are keeping spirits high by celebrating fun Fridays – by wearing Hawaiian shirts and throwing parties to mark Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and Kat’s 41st birthday.
The team has been enchanted by the stunning sunrises and sunsets and cheered by the plentiful wildlife, including dolphins, turtles and a whale.
By taking part in the challenge, the trio are also determined to turn the tide on cancer. It’s a cause particularly close to their hearts as Kat has battled breast cancer in recent months. Their chosen charities are Cancer Research UK, MacMillan Cancer Support and The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity. They have set themselves the ambitious target of £100,000.
If, like us, you are inspired by their drive, determination and very embodiment of the LEH motto: Hope Favours the Bold, please show your support by donating to their fundraising page here: https://www.weareextraoardinary.com/donate. And if you'd like to keep up with their progress, please follow them on Instagram at @weareextraoardinary.
- LEH Rowing