Wrekin Rowers update by Stuart Shepherd

As you might be aware, we got our new boat ‘ClearCourse’ back in June. When we got her, she had no electrics fitted other than the batteries and solar panels which allowed us to run a navigation light in the dark. As part of our final preparations, we put her back into the workshop where all the electrics were then fitted in August. We then did a final shakedown with her down at Burnham On Crouch to test all of the new equipment. This went really well.

Training on the water is now complete. As part of the rules for entry into the race, we have had to complete a minimum of 120 hours on the water of which 20 have to be at night. We have completed more than 150 hours now with at least 40 of those hours being at night on the open ocean. Training on the water has been a great way for us to get to know the boat a lot more and to experience some pretty rough conditions out on the Welsh Coast.

On one of our training weekends, the sea conditions were so rough that after rowing for the best part of 30 minutes, we only managed to move about 20 metres in distance as the wind and waves were so strong. At this point we decided to put the para anchor out (which helps hold us in position) and get into our cabins. We stayed in there for around 10 hours which is very cosy having two burly people in a small space for that amount of time!

We have been packing the boat the last couple of weeks as we will be shipping it out to La Gomera on the 25th October ready for our arrival there on the 29th November. The race starts on the 12th December and there will be lots to do in getting all of the finishing touches does to the boat and planning before we start.

Do not forget that you will be able to follow us using the YB races app which you can access from here https://www.ybtracking.com/race-app.php

At the start of December you should be able to download the race to the app and then it will be updated every 4 hours with our progress. Also, if you want to follow us on Facebook, there will be our normal updates plus a group called Dot Watchers as lots of stuff about the race in general https://www.facebook.com/groups/1551884771769108.