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Freebird , Orobal and two men in a boat
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Contributed by John   
Thursday, 25 October 2007

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It all started in 1966 when John Ridgeway and Chay Blyth wrote a new page in the history books by rowing from Cape Cod to Aran Island in 92 days. Now 31 years later it’s the turn of Peter Raab and Tim Wilks to take on the Atlantic, leaving Puerto Colon, Tenerife on December 8, bound for Antigua, West Indies.

 

The near 3,000 mile trip will raise funds for Orobal a charity based in Los Cristianos, that helps physically and mentally handicapped children to live fuller and happier lives. The charity money is on top of the 60,000 euros the rowers have had to raise just to compete in the race and prepare themselves and the boat, Matha Dos, for the journey.
Thankfully they have plenty of friends and sponsors, Freebird

Peter Raab (left)  and Tim Wilks

(http://www.freebirdsailing.com )  are the latest sponsor to put their support behind the adventure. The catamaran and jeep tour company are based in Puerto Colon, a short hop away from Peter’s Total Marine (http://www.totalmarine.eu.com)  business, and will be arranging a series of events leading up to the big day.
Working with boats, Peter, originally from Germany but living in Tenerife, has a good general knowledge of the sea but has never rowed before. Tim, from Darlington, has done a little sports sailing but has also never rowed. Training sessions out on the boat have been a hard learning curve for both rowers but the race requires much more than that. It’s very much a mental test as well, with the isolation of the open sea, a very testing environment and busy shipping lanes always capable of springing a surprise or two.
The clock is ticking down, the food and water will soon be loaded and the muscles are ready to take the strain. Fair winds and calm waters chaps, next stop Antigua.

 

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