Posted by: Helena Smalman-Smith | November 12, 2011

The Final Countdown?

In just over a week, on 20 November, we’ll be flying out to la Gomera in the Canaries, for 2 weeks of boat prep and briefings. So it was great to have a chance to say goodbye to local friends, colleagues, neighbours and even Helena’s cousin Fiona (not that she isn’t a friend too) at a little do last night.

Our neighbours have been wonderful about the fact that there’s been a hulking great orange boat parked on our drive for most for the last 6 months, and once we’d sorted out one on the fact that there wasn’t a hidden engine on her powered by the solar panels, and another on the fact that when we said “Atlantic Rowing Race” we DID mean all the way across, and it wasn’t just a small race somewhere on the Atlantic, they’ve all got to grips with the logistics of it all. And we think that Jessica and Louis from over the road, both proficient kayakers, would be ideal candidates to be the first brother and sister team to row an ocean – maybe in about 10 years’ time.

We were also touched by the lovely St Christopher that Helena’s skiffing training partner Rod gave us – thanks, Rod, for your willingness to do weekly 10km outings (which is quite a lot in a skiff) for most of the past year in the interests of Helena’s endurance training! And also a big thank you to our elderly neighbour Michael who was unable to pop round as he’s poorly at the moment, yet was determined to make a donation to our charities. Having lived in this street since it was built, he’s been wonderfully tolerant of our strange ways since we moved in (parking school minibuses on the pavement being just one example of our anti-social behaviour).

And now a couple of links for you. First, an interview that sports news site SportsVibe did with us:

Second, and MOST importantly, we now have the URL for the site where the race tracker will go up once the race starts – this site is currently being developed, following Talisker Whisky signing up as headline race sponsors very recently, but you can save the link as a Favourite for visiting later, and also sign up for its updates as well as these ones, if you’re interested:

This link can also be found on the Contact page on our own site, of course.

Below is a picture of a wonderful card created by Helena’s cousin Katie, aged 11 – thank you!

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