They Did It!
It's official, our Go Ape team has conquered the Three Peaks Yacht Race!
After setting sail last Saturday (11th June) the team has been battling their way against their fellow competitors, the elements and shall we say, a few technical troubles...all to cross the finish line at 6:30am this morning.
The monumental journey encompassed 389 miles of sailing, 72 miles of running and 18 miles of cycling and took our tremendous tribe approx. four days and 16 hours to complete.
We're amazingly proud of Jerome Mayhew, Paul Love-Williams and Tris Mayhew for successfully sailing 62 sea miles from Barmouth to Caernarfon, 100 sea miles from Caernarfon to Whitehaven and a further staggering 227 sea miles from Whitehaven to Fort William - as well a few stops in between.
Not stopping at a broken impeller drive the crew also had to get creative once again after the yacht exhaust melted before coming into Whitehaven.
The kindness of strangers at the port meant the crew could continue after 'borrowing' some flexible piping. By cutting off the melted in/out section of piping and ingeniously gaffer-taping new sections together, coupled with a bit of lubrication from some washing up liquid the team was ready to set of again in search of adventure (and the next team to beat).
Coming out of Whitehaven the team made great progress hurling along against the current for four hours straight. On four occasions the rudder lost its grip keeping the crew on their toes. Yet, against the unseasonably brisk June winds, the yacht averaged around 14 knots, a solid speed for a 30ft boat!
Let's not forget the other heroes from one of the UK's toughest endurance races, the devoted runners, Ed Smith and Mick Rimmer.
We have been in awe of their perseverance as they've charged up the three highest peaks in Wales, England and Scotland. The stalwart runners not only had to experience hours upon hours of rumbling around in the cabin whilst at sea (an encounter I'm told that is much like spinning around in a washing machine!), they also had to adapt to ever-changing timescales, which meant running through the night...
Arriving at the final peak, Ben Nevis, at around midnight Ed and Mick ran through the early hours to cross the finish line at 6:30am, much to the joy of the team and everyone at Go Ape. Combining the distance of Mt. Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis their running efforts equated to running three marathons in as many days across some of the trickiest terrain the UK has to offer.
Now we patiently wait for the Three Peaks Yacht Race to officially announce the positions for the finalists. A superb achievement by a team that truly eats, sleeps and breathes the Go Ape way of life.
After speaking with a, quite rightfully, elated Jerome Mayhew, here's a few words from the Skipper himself:
It was an intense, amazing experience - we just had to keep going! Our competitors were world-class and whilst we're a fairly novice team in comparison we couldn't be more delighted with the result. Some moments were incredibly challenging but when things go wrong you just have to turn I can't into I can, and that's what we did.
On asking whether Jerome would do it all again:
Without a shadow of a doubt.
Of course the team were racing for more than just the challenge, they were racing to help raise money for the Outward Bound Trust.
Your support will help change the life of a young person from a disadvantaged background. For every £200 raised, another young person is able to experience the challenge of an Outward Bound course. To find out more about the trust, visit https://www.outwardbound.org.uk/.
Please donate to support the tribe as they embark on one of toughest adventure races, just head to our Virgin Money Giving page.
We'll be keeping the blog updated with first-hand tales from the race, including how they coped with 37.9 knot gales! Perhaps we'll give them the weekend to recover first...