Total Thames 2017 Challengers Break World Record!

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Lymington Rowing Club’s pair, Dave Mans and Rob Maltby are now the proud holders of the World Record for the fastest row along the 167 mile length of the River Thames. Congratulations and well done to you both for such a brilliant achievement!

They rowed the 167 mile length of the River Thames in just over 30 hours, breaking the previous Guinness World Record of 36 hours by a massive 6 hours!

Dave and Rob have over 30 years of coastal rowing experience between them. They have a growing number of rowing achievements to their names, including successfully completing the 500-mile ‘Old Pulteney’ row to the magnetic North Pole.

The purpose of the row is to raise funds for the veterans’ mental health charity Combat Stress and Lymington Rowing Club’s new club house. Lymington Rowing Club is a community sports association.

Please support their amazing efforts on Just Giving:

https://www.justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/hampshire-iowcommunity/totalthames17

Combat Stress have helped former servicemen and women deal with issues like trauma, anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder for almost a century. They provide support to veterans from every service and every conflict over the phone and online, in the community and at treatment centres. Their mission is to raise awareness that invisible injuries can be just as hard to cope with as physical ones. So when a veteran is having a tough time, there’s someone there to help tackle the past and to help them take on the future.

Both rowers serve in the army and Dave said the support Combat Stress give to ex-armed forces personnel is so important. “People are really aware of the more visible injuries people suffer from serving. The coverage and public knowledge of it is getting better, but a lot of the problem is the lack of visible symptoms with mental health. The charity do an incredible job helping veterans all over the country.”

Total Thames 2017: the challenge

During their journey, Dave and Rob burnt around 30,000 calories, travelled across nine counties, went through 45 locks and under 214 bridges. The team from Lymington really did maximise their technical, practical and physical experience of rowing in challenging coastal conditions in order to set this new world record.

Rob and Dave were assisted by an exceptional support team from Lymington Rowing Club, including experts in yacht racing, rowing boat construction and an RAF Doctor. The athletes used a specially developed boat that maximised speed in the calmer upper Thames but was also seaworthy enough to cope with rougher water in the Thames Estuary.

“We came up with the idea to try and break the record together really at the same time,” Dave said, before the event. “Normally crews who try this to do this row on the Thames are traditional river rowers from City clubs. We’re hoping our experience and specific skills developed in coastal rowing will help to give us some form of advantage over the course of the challenge. Sections of the River Thames are known to be quite rough, but we should be comfortable in that environment.”

To prepare for the physical challenge ahead of them the pair, who both row at Lymington Rowing Club, have combined long sessions on the rowing machines with distance runs to build up their stamina.

Thank you to everyone who has supported the challenge.

“We’ve had some fantastic support from local businesses so far and hopefully that will continue right up to and after the challenge so we can raise money for a key cause as well as the rowing club’s project.” said Dave before the event.

The pair are particularly thankful to local department store Bradbeers who have given a donation of £1000 and also to Spencers New Forest and Burgashell Racing Boats. If you would like to find out more about the challenge and donate to the good causes they are supporting, please click on the Just Giving link above.