The Tempest Two – The Final Day

The Tempest Two hit solid land in Barbados this morning! After tackling the toughest voyage on earth rowing day and night since the 19th of December the team finally accomplished their mission.

Battling to stay positive while putting in endless days of rowing against the fierce storms and Northern winds has taken toll on The Tempest Two.  Our heroes have held their hopes high to the very end, completing this epic journey at an impressive rate.

Before they embarked we caught up with Tom Caulfield of The Tempest Two to learn about the intense preparation and sheer determination needed to make journey possible:

Q. You have almost no experience in rowing. How are you training up?

It’s been very substantial, over the past 16 months we’ve been training. It’s been a mixture of programmes, from strength to flexibility and endurance. We have worked with a physiotherapist to ensure that our bodies are ready for the journey. We feel that the most difficult part was that neither of us had set foot in a boat, so initially we had to jump in a rowing boat to understand the mechanics of what was involved. From there we were able to break up our training into specific movements.

Q. Most people would agree that this voyage is a little crazy. How did you decide to take it on?

The decision came from me watching the Clipper World Boat race coming into docs, which my mother was taking part in. I just saw the enthusiasm and the buzz around the crews taking part, I was inspired by this hugely. After this it was simply a text to James while in the pub and said we should do something big, this then got the ball rolling.

Q. You’ll be burning a lot of calories each day. What kind of sea rations are you bringing to keep up with the loss?

Before we left our diet was three good meals per day to supplement the training we were doing, so we were hitting about 5,000+ calories per day with a balanced diet. While out on the water we will be rationed to 4 freeze dried meals per day, the options are oatmeal & raspberry, scrambled eggs, ham, chicken tikka masala, bolognese and salmon. Alongside this we have a number of snacks: protein balls, coconut oil and peanut butter to keep the calories high.

Q. How have you mentally prepared for this challenge?

The mental side of this challenge is much more important than the physical side. You can prepare the strength training that you want but if you’re not there mentally on day one then you will fail. But we’ve been 100% confident from day one that we can smash this. If we went in with the mentality that we’re out of our depth then it would have been a lonely place for us both. Out on the water we’re lucky that we have a two man team to push each other when things get rough.

Q. You’re giving yourselves two-hour breaks. How do you switch off and get rest?

We’re not really too sure about the answer for this as you can’t prepare for it. We’ve been advised by a number of people that have completed similar challenges. Initially it’s going to be pretty tough to get into this pattern but then after this we will be in the swing on things. What we’re nervous about is the other things that we have to do in the two hours such as, eating, maintenance, uploading, cleaning. To change things up every now and again we will row together and then take some time off together.

Q. Let’s say a punishing storm blows through. How do you manage towering swells and gale force winds?

Rule number one is that unless it is dead flat you keep all the hatches closed. At the end of the day it’s pretty likely that we’ll hit some big waves and get flipped. If you get flipped and everything is shut then the boat will return to normal and we can row again, but if we have a tiny lapse of concentration and the latches are open then the affects can be catastrophic. If water gets into the cabins then the boat will likely stay capsized. The Atlantic is known for rogue waves so we have to be ready for these.

Q. How will LifeProof help you on your journey?

LifeProof has already been a massive help, I dropped my phone in a puddle of water on the boat and I had my case on so it was perfect. We did that before while training and we lost the phone to water damage. These devices are our lifelines while out on the water, they host all our movies, music and books so it is amazing to know that our devices are always ready for every situation thrown at us.

Q. Are there any TV shows that you’ll miss?

Fortunately we won’t have to miss anything as we’ve been able to add full TV series to our LifeProof protected iPad’s to watch while on the go!

 

A huge congratulations to the heroic pair on completing this epic journey, stay tuned for an update on their experiences during their grueling 3 months at sea.

Alan Lund

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