Vanessa Carlton: A Thousand MilesiTunesAmazon

Vanessa Carlton: A Thousand MilesiTunesAmazon

Four Yorkshire rowers prepare for the Atlantic


Published by May Norman at 8:24am 31st May 2019.

Main image courtesy of Charlotte Graham: Richard Hall and Chris Hames from Force Atlantic rowing at Castle Howard

Yorkshire rowers embark on tour of the county

  • The team from the Army Foundation College in Harrogate are training for the next Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge.
  • The four servicemen are to row 3,000 nautical miles across the Atlantic Ocean.
  • As part of their training, the team are currently on a 'pop-up rowing tour' around Yorkshire.

Force Atlantic, the British Army’s Yorkshire based trans-Atlantic rowing team, has embarked upon a ‘pop-up rowing tour’, incorporating stops at some of the county’s most iconic locations.

The four intrepid servicemen visited Castle Howard and RHS Harlow Carr this weekend, complete with rowing machines, to train for their upcoming challenge.

The team - all based at the Army Foundation College in Harrogate - are gearing up to row 3,000 nautical miles across the Atlantic Ocean for the next Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge.

They’ll set off from La Gomera in the Canary Islands in December and row all the way to English Harbour in Antigua, as one of the 30 teams from around the globe.

It’s been described as “the world’s toughest row” - and just to put into perspective how gruelling it is, more people have climbed Everest than rowed across the Atlantic Ocean!

The all-male crew consists of the College Commanding Officer, two Captain instructors, and a Junior Soldier rowing as the British Army’s Official entry in the 2019 race. On board will be 18-year-old Kian Helm who will become the 3rd youngest person ever to have rowed an ocean and the youngest military ocean rower in the world. 

The team’s Skipper, Lieutenant Colonel Rich Hall MBE said:

“We are really enjoying the chance to combine our rowing challenge with the showcasing of Yorkshire’s amazing heritage, scenery and buildings.

“Through Welcome to Yorkshire, we have rowed at Castle Howard, RHS Harlow Carr and Almscliffe Crag and have more pop-ups planned at Ripley Castle, Newby Hall and Harrogate’s famous Stray, to name but a few. 

“The receptions have been brilliant. I think people are pretty curious as to why we have been sat on top of a cliff face rowing a half-marathon. When we explain we will be rowing, unsupported across 3,000 miles of the North Atlantic in December they think - well, that makes sense, you are clearly all crazy!”

Force Atlantic depart La Gomera in the Canary Islands on 12 December 2019, aiming to reach Antigua 40 days later. Rowing in pairs in two-hour shifts, through day and night, it will take a million oar strokes to complete the journey.

Peter Dodd, Commercial Director for Welcome to Yorkshire said:

“Welcome to Yorkshire has a proud history of supporting Yorkshire-based individuals and teams facing incredible challenges - and this year is no exception. It’s fantastic to have another team flying the Yorkshire flag in the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge.

“We’re delighted that they’re getting out and about to attractions around the county too - a great way to raise awareness of their upcoming challenge!”

Force Atlantic are hoping to raise £100k for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity. To follow their progress and find out more, visit:


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