Here at AS Water sports we like to support many different charity events and causes. Some big, some small, local and international.
This time it is a bit of both. Local people on an international scale.
One of the participants in this fund raising challenge is none other than upcoming extreme kayaker, Dartmoor local and friend, Tom Rainey.
Read this to find out why we wanted to get involved.
In May 2015 Tom Rainey and Sam Coombs will spend up to 3 months rowing across the North Atlantic to raise £250,000 for the Brain Tumour Charity. Tom and Sam, as Ocean Valour, will be the youngest ever team to row from the mainland USA to mainland UK, and they will be entirely unsupported.
The pinnacle of ocean rowing, this trip has been attempted by 60 crews, completed by only 22 and with 5 crews lost at sea – meanwhile there have been over 5000 successful summits of Mount Everest, and, by comparison, over 170 crews have attempted the southern Atlantic crossing with the majority succeeding.
In 2012, just before Christmas, Tom lost his father, Luke Rainey. As a passionate sailor and wonderful father he taught Tom a great deal about life, the ocean and to respect his environment. His death was due to a brain tumour and it rocked Tom and his family to the core. But, thanks to the Brain Tumour Charity they were provided with the help and advice which gave them an invaluable port in an otherwise un-weatherable storm.
Having spent their lives on the sea, having represented GB sailing around the globe, and studied the marine environment at university, Tom and Sam have an intuitive understanding and respect for the ocean and how it is being profoundly affected by debris.
The North Atlantic garbage patch is an area of man-made marine debris. It stretches hundreds of square kilometres with over 200,000 pieces of debris per square km – plastics which never dissolve but only break down into micro-plastics which seabirds mistake for food.
Parents inadvertently feed their chicks bottle caps and lighters, mistaking them for their natural diet. Full of man made garbage, and with no room left for food, they starve to death. Worldwide, up to one million seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals die each year from eating plastic.
By recording the positions of this area of garbage, the pair hope to raise awareness of the state of the oceans and what can be done to save them before it is too late.
Surfers, ultra-marathon runners, international sailors, extreme white water kayakers, Tom and Sam know what it is to undertake an expedition, but this is their first one of this magnitude. Their endeavour is a remarkable one, It is the essence of the indomitability of the human spirit. Old school adventurers, with true grit and determination, pitted against the challenges of mother nature; waves equivalent to a 7 story building, icebergs, winds in excess of 80 mph, in freezing waters and alone on a voyage of 3,800 miles.
If successful Tom and Sam will be the youngest team to complete this remarkable voyage.
We are supporting the guys with a small but vital product to make their lives at sea much more comfortable.
Gurney Goo is an anti chafing, anti blister, anti friction, anti septic lubricating gloop. (a bit like vasoline in consistency).
Developed by extreme adventure racers in New Zealand to prevent blisters, rotting feet and chafing.
Sam and Tom will mostly be using it on their botties to make the countless hours of pulling on the oars much more comfortable.
We wish them both the best of luck and invite you to help them on their way to reaching their goals.
Please visit their website, Facebook page and more importantly their Just Giving page and donate a little of your dosh. Every penny is fully appreciated and will go a long way to helping their cause.
Facebook: Ocean valour
Just Giving: Donate