Latest (13 Mar ’13): Charlie has made it across the Atlantic and broken the world record. It took him just 35 days, and the journey was far from smooth, although Charlie said that he never felt in danger, and at one point he was very unwell.
Well done Charlie, you have done yourself and Essex proud!
Published 10 Jan ’13: Felsted’s Charlie Pitcher, aged 49 years, plans to row single handedly (actually he will use both hands, but he will be rowing by himself) across the Atlantic ocean in Twiggy.
This will not be the first time that Charlie takes to the Atlantic. In 2010 he rowed across the Atlantic in 52 days, breaking the previous record of 68 days. However, in January 2012 his mate Andrew Brown beat his record, shaving more than 12 days off his time, crossing the Atlantic in 40 days.
Tenerife To Barbados
The journey which Charlie will take is the 2,936 miles from La Gomera in Tenerife, which is an island off the West Coast of Africa, to Barbados in the Caribbean.
Andrew Brown rowed in a 5.7 m boat which was previously owned by Charlie. In fact, Charlie helped train Andrew and prepare home for the journey so it is a very friendly rivalry.
Soma, a.k.a Twiggy
Charlie’s new boat is called Soma of Essex, although Charlie likes to call her Twiggy. It is a longer boat, measuring 6.5 m, and thinner (1.5 m wide) and lighter than the one he and Andrew previously used. The total weight of the boat, its contents and Charlie will be just 460 kg.
16 Hours and 8000 Calories a Day
To cross the Atlantic in less than 40 days Charlie plans to row for 16 hours a day, with just 4 hours sleep each night. The other 4 hours will be spent eating, washing and giving his muscles a rest.
He will need to consume 8000 Calories a day to fuel his body, and before starting the row he needs to gain 12-15 kg of muscle.
Charlie is currently waiting for the perfect weather conditions to allow him to cross the Atlantic at the safest time. He aims to cross the Atlantic in 40 days and 8 hours, beating Andrew Brown by just 1 hour 44 minutes.
As well as rowing across the Atlantic Charlie is also an ultra runner, which means he runs races that exceed marathon distance. In 2009 he ran in the Marathon Des Sables, a 151 mili run i nthe Sahara Desert, and in 2011 he competed in a 350 km non-stop run across Scotland.
He has so far raised £100,000 to finance his expedition. The Sun newspaper and Balmore Whiskey are sponsoring him.
Read more about Charlie’s solo row across the Atlantic here: http://transatlanticsolo.com/charlie/
Tempted to try your hands at rowing? Then find a rowing club in Essex and start pulling those oars.