Kirkcaldy Rugby ace taking on world’s toughest rowing race

A Kirkcaldy Rugby player is taking on his toughest challenge to date.

Thursday, 19th December 2019, 11:54 am
Matt Harvey (front) of Kirkcaldy Rugby Club is taking part in the world’s toughest rowing race, the 3,000-mile Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.
Matt Harvey (front) of Kirkcaldy Rugby Club is taking part in the world’s toughest rowing race, the 3,000-mile Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

Matthew Harvey is one of four submariners who have embarked on a daring 3000-mile challenge as they aim to tackle the ‘world’s toughest row’.

HMS Oardacious - made up of lieutenants Hugo Mitchell-Heggs and Callum Fraser, petty officer Dylan Woods and leading engineer technician Matthew - are amongst the 35 teams to take on the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

Rowing in their £65,000 custom-built ‘unsinkable’ boat HMS Oardacious, the intrepid Royal Navy team began their journey across the Atlantic last Thursday as they powered across the start line in La Gomera.

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Before setting off, Matthew posted on Facebook: “This will be one of, if not the biggest challenge of my life so a mix of emotions at the moment, excited nonetheless.”

The race is set to take between 20 to 40 days with the teams venturing in an unsupported row from La Gomera to Antigua, which will see them completing more than 1.5m strokes.

Expecting to tackle 20ft waves on their journey, the crew members will be rowing for two hours, and sleeping for two hours for 24 hours a day, losing an average of 12kg.

This feat will be achieved with an aim to raise £130,000 for the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity and set up a new mental health support network for those in the Senior Service.

Blues forward Matthew added: ‘Our culture as submariners seems like the perfect preparation, whether it is knowing everything there is to know about our boat, looking out for our team mates, managing watch systems, all while contending with sleep deprivation and dealing with the emotions of leaving our loved ones.”

To support the boys in their courageous venture, text ‘NAVY OAR’ to 70500 to donate £5 to the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity.