Whatever you do NEVER row the Boston Marathon!
Not, that is, unless you are the sort of person who enjoys things like five-o’clock-in-the-morning outings, long painful ergs, out-of-breath sprints, blistered hands, sore bums, droning coxes, floppy boats, late catches, endless dykes, grumpy fishermen, broken riggers, warm bananas, heavy boats and never-ending rivers. If you like these things then I would recommend it. We do, we loved it, every minute of the 4 hours and 24 minutes it took us to row the 31 miles. That’s not counting the hour and a half waiting for Derek (the fittest member of the crew) to jog 2 miles back to the start looking for a replacement rigger nut that Sean Ross (yes that’s him, the Scottish boatman who tipped us in the river last week!) mysteriously lost.
Once underway again, we had a good row for the first 20 miles or so (might have been 22 or even 18). Our Technical Support Vehicle and Physio (actually Richard’s Dad and Gran) couldn’t believe we were so slow so they went to the pub and ate the mars bars we had been longing for. The last eight miles dragged – even John’s list of terrible jokes failed to lift our rating and we were all in agony by the time the finish finally came in sight. It’s a long race that one, I hate it.
Anybody interested in doing it next year? Well done to Phil Biggin (stroke), Sean Ross (3), Derek Kennet (2), Richard Holland (bow) and John Pinot de Moira (cox and in-flight entertainment) for finishing this tough course.