Since the time of publishing this article, we are ecstatic to announce that Dave and Max have since won the race in a world record time.
An almighty achievement as they rowed from La Gomera to Antigua in 37 days, 7 hours and 54 minutes. Join us in sending them the biggest congratulations and wishes for a speedy recovery after putting their bodies through an endurance challenge of a lifetime.
Read on to learn about their story and the incredible battle they can to even make it to the start line.
Leading through adversity, uncertainty and change, with resilience. The sentence that keeps Max Thorpe and Dave Spelmen digging deep when circumstances get tough – a mission they endeavour to internalise when living through an experience most wouldn’t even dream of contemplating – rowing across the Atlantic.
In July 2015, the duo set themselves a mighty goal to row across the Atlantic Ocean in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. A challenge that is frequently regarded as the toughest on Earth. Almost a year into training, Dave was offered a professional rugby contract and their pursuit of taking on the challenge was abruptly looking uncertain. As Dave rightly pursued this unique opportunity, Max quickly recruited the only other man mad enough to take it on with him - Chris Williams.
2 years later after fundraising and relentless training, Chris and Max departed La Gomera on the December 14th 2017 against 28 different teams from 18 different countries, and, unfortunately straight into the ocean’s worst conditions in a decade. Little did they know, they were heading into some of the worst sea conditions in over a decade. After 10 days and over 1000km covered, they were leading the race when further disaster struck. In the middle of the Atlantic, a huge a rogue wave caused an enormous capsize which ignited a fire on board their boat facing them with an unrelenting and harrowing fight for their lives in unimaginable conditions.