Friends rowing 3,000 miles across Atlantic Ocean to launch challenge at Doncaster Racecourse

Two friends who are taking on the biggest task of their lives by rowing 3,000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean in a tiny boat are to launch their challenge at Doncaster Racecourse.

By Darren Burke
Saturday, 9th October 2021, 11:49 am
Charlotte and Jessica are to row across the Atlantic Ocean this winter.
Charlotte and Jessica are to row across the Atlantic Ocean this winter.

Jessica Oliver and Charlotte Harris will spend more than 60 days at sea when they take part in the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge in December.

They will row for 3,000 miles across the ocean as part of Team Wild Waves with the pair rowing for two hours on, two hours off, 24 hours a day.

Their ultimate goal is to raise £100,000 for Shelter and Women's Aid.

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They are being sponsored in their challenge by Doncaster-based retirement adviser, My Pension Expert and will be coming to Doncaster Racecourse on October 18 with their boat to formally launch the challenge.

Widely accepted as the world’s toughest row, Wild Waves will see 35 teams from around the world making their way from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua and Barbuda.

Since 2021, just three pairs of women have successfully rowed across the Atlantic, and Jessica and Charlotte hope to join this elite club later this year.

Adding to the challenge is the fact that neither Jessica or Charlotte have any prior rowing or ocean experience prior to this challenge, so they certainly have their work cut out.

Despite the enormity of the task, the pair have been enduring intensive training, and are determined to succeed in their mission to raise £100,000 for their chosen charities as well as hoping to inspire even more women’s pairs teams to enter into the world’s toughest row.

To mark the beginning of their bold charitable endeavour, My Pension Expert and Wild Waves will be hosting a formal launch at Doncaster Racecourse, to showcase their newly designed boat, and celebrate the incredible causes they are supporting throughout their adventure.

Known as the premier event in ocean rowing, the extreme endurance challenge will push the pair to the absolute limits of their mental and physical wellbeing.

Jessica, 29 said: “We have been best friends since meeting at Cardiff University nearly 10 years ago and both of us love a challenge.

“Charlotte has climbed the Himalayas and completed the London marathon, I love triathlons.

"In October 2019 we both entered and won our first and only white-collar boxing matches.

"Collectively through our sporting challenges we have raised over £8,000 for charity.

"However, we wanted to do more.

“After the boxing we knew we wanted to raise money for Shelter and after researching that 33 per cent of homeless women become homeless due to domestic abuse, we added Women’s Aid to our cause - we just needed a challenge.

"Neither of us have any ocean or rowing experience so it seemed like an impossible challenge and was therefore perfect.

“For us personally this will be the most rewarding, life-changing experience and will catapult our fundraising efforts well and truly to the next level.”

The pair have been on courses for electricals, water making, sea navigation, weather routing, ocean safety, first aid and VHF radio, most followed by a certification.

You can contribute to the fundraising appeal HERE