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Wisemans Bridge Rowing Club Celtic Challenge Team

Friday 2nd May 2014

The Celtic Challenge is the World’s longest true rowing race with teams of rowers from clubs in Wales and Ireland rowing from Arklow to Aberystwyth, a good 90 miles if you could row in a straight line across the Irish Sea! This year we have a team of 12 rowers – women and men aged between 22 and 63, who will take turns to row for about 24 hours to complete the challenge. It is a gruelling event and we are training very hard in preparation. We have also been working with volunteers from the Tenby RNLI to improve our safety training and ensure we participate as safely as possible.

Each team doing the Celtic Challenge consists of 12 people who take it in turns to row, spending the time in between on a support boat. A small inflatable transfers people between the support boat and the rowing boat. When and how often teams swap rowers and the exact course rowed is all part of the tactics of the race.

We had a great fundraising band night at the RAOB club in Kilgetty with covers band P’tcheow giving us plenty to dance and sing along to. It was a huge success and was thoroughly enjoyed by all.

We have had some great sponsorship from local and not so local businesses. Stuart Roberts at Force 4 Chandlery in Cardiff very kindly donated much appreciated vital safety equipment – a waterproof VHF radio and chargers and a full set of mini flares. We wish him well in his adventure later this year in kayaking out around Eddystone Lighthouse, another huge challenge.

We have had a donation of £100 from the Power Station which will be a help towards the boat charters. We have also had sponsorship from Seven Spice, Begelly Arms, Ocean Hair, Kilgetty Coop, Ocean Studio, Begelly Beads, Tetley tea, Manor Park and many raffle prizes from local businesses. We are very grateful for all this support – it is all a great help to our team and our participation in the challenge.

As the weather has meant we have not been able to get out training on the sea as much as we wanted to over the winter we arranged a of day training at Llys y Fran on the reservoir. The wardens were very helpful and we had a long day swapping teams in and out of the boat. It was a great opportunity for training and for team building in preparation for the challenge. We had a brilliant day and the wardens helped with our crew changes and to lift the boat back onto the trailer at the end of the day when we were tired. This will be a great venue for hosting the dragon boat races later in the spring.

We had a Mexican evening at The Shoreline Café in Saundersfoot on Saturday 22nd March. It was a brilliant evening with good food, a quiz and raffle and piñata. A night of great fun, good company and we raised quite a lot for the challenge too. The café have also sponsored the team to the tune of £200 which is a fantastic donation and greatly appreciated support.

2014 Celtic Challenge Team:

Team Captain – Libby

More pictures on the gallery