All-female crew boat will attempt to break 2,000-mile world record

ON Sunday (June 4), an all-female rowing crew, known as Team Ithaca, set off on a rowing challenge to circumnavigate Great Britain. They were due to depart from Tower Bridge in London to begin their 2,000-mile journey.
Among the crew of six is Salisbury-based Amy Wood. Four years ago, she rowed the Atlantic and has previously represented England at karate and competed internationally in gymnastics.
After months of training, the team’s challenge will be to row continuously and unsupported, with the ultimate aim of finishing the row within 50 days or less. If successful, they will break the world record, becoming the first team of six to have completed the feat.
While contending with fast-turning tides, unpredictable UK weather, a rocky coastline and busy shipping areas, the team will also be collecting samples for vital ocean conservation research by the University of Portsmouth and raising money for cancer charity, CanRehab Trust. The trust provides individualised exercise, nutritional and emotional support to people living with (and beyond) cancer in the UK, helping them become or stay active by matching them with a registered cancer exercise instructor.
Team Ithaca said: “We all come from active and adventurous backgrounds, but this race requires more than just strength, stamina and endurance.
“We’re excited to push ourselves mentally and physically, while helping some really worthwhile causes. By achieving this incredible feat, Team Ithaca would join the history books as the first British team of six to complete the challenge.”
The team has partnered with the University of Portsmouth and will be collecting data on microplastics, sound pollution, salinity, temperature and even traces of marine biology through DNA samples. The data will be used to assess the environmental damage and long-term impact of pollutants in our seas and oceans, contributing to the largest dataset of its kind for UK seas.
Dr Fay Couceiro, lead scientist at the University of Portsmouth, said: “Data collected during the GB Row Challenge will significantly improve our understanding of the changing numbers of microplastics in our waters.”
The team’s Instagram and Facebook handle is @TeamIthaca. Their website is 
For tracking – YB races / Marine Traffic (boat name GB Row Challenger).  

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