Ready to Row

One day till race start.

By Susan Ronaldson on December 11, 2018

One day to go! When you’ve aimed, struggled, worked hard for, dreamed of, put everything into something for months and years, it’s hard to believe it when it’s finally here. Tomorrow we are going to set out rowing from the marina in La Gomera, and not stop til we hit land in Antigua weeks and weeks later. Wow!

We’ve been out in La Gomera for 12 days and its been fantastic. For the 18 months of our campaign we’ve largely been the exceptions - 3 individuals doing something completely different that most people don’t entirely get. But here we’re part of a community of 88. We all might be taking on the row for slightly different reasons, but we’ve been through similar journeys and are all experiencing the rollercoaster of emotions as we lead up to the start. Everyone is supportive and friendly - helping each other, sharing spare kit and supplies and generally banding together. We’ve made friends for life and there is some sadness that we won’t be undertaking the next bit together - when we set off it will be just us 3 and our little boat Poppy.

I’ve felt remarkably chilled since I’ve been here. But there are ups and downs, and lots of emotions which bubble up from time to time! Even now it feels a bit unreal and surreal. Is this really happening? I’m not the kind of person who rows oceans. Am I?

I’ve said before that I’m only here because of my amazing friends Caroline and Jess. People here have labelled us the happy team and I’m so proud of that. We work together, laugh together, sometimes cry together… and it’s our togetherness that will get us safely across- as friends and hopefully record holders!

Very much on our mind is the wider Status Row team. We wouldn’t be here without the generous financial and other support of friends, family, colleagues and complete strangers! [people from the NAO have been incredible with their support!] We couldn’t be more grateful and the thoughts of everyone will keep us going. My Mum, Dad, Sister & brother in law, and my little Nephew will be with me all the way- leaving them is the hardest thing, but having them on my team the biggest strength.

So here we go! You can follow us on Yellow Brick - download the YB races app and select Talisker Atlantic Whisky Challenge. We hope to be able to provide updates by tweets and the odd blog. And one final request - we didn’t want to do this challenge for challenge sake. It’s adventure with a purpose. So while we are away, please think carefully about your use of single use plastic. And if you haven’t yet, please help us raise funds for the Marine Conservation Society through our website or Virgin Giving Page. They are an amazing charity, helping to protect this one planet we call home.

Thanks again for your support and we’ll see you on the other side!

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