Tom Phillips, who played for the 1st XV in 2011 and 2012 as a hooker is taking on the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge, the world’s toughest rowing race which covers some 3,000 miles unaided across the Atlantic Ocean.

The challenge began on 12th December when Tom and three of his mates left Gomera in the Canary Islands to row across the Atlantic to the Caribbean or Antigua to be precise – 3,000 nautical miles in their boat named Oardacity. This meant the lads spent Christmas Day together in the close confines of their boat as well as seeing in the New Year on the oceans wave.

The foursome will be taking two hour shifts of rowing and then two hours rest in pairs. The lads are aiming to try and beat the World Record which took 29 days and 15 hours to complete the race. The team is raising money for two charities, Mind and the Christina Noble Children’s Foundation.

There are 20 teams taking part in the race where they can easily experience 20 ft high waves. Each boat battling against the elements across the deepest part of the Atlantic Ocean at 5.3 miles deep and where each rower can expect to burn off 5,000 calories per day and lose up to 12 kg in body weight by the end of the race – so definitely not for the feint hearted.

MRFC would like to wish Tom and his fellow crewmen luck and hope they arrive at their destination in one piece and raise plenty of money for their chosen charities. They will certainly have some stories to tell and hopefully Tom will be able visit MRFC again when times return to a more normal to tell us of his amazing life experience.

If you would like to follow the lad’s journey then you can go to Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge | Team Oardacity

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