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More bad luck for transatlantic charity rowers Oar Blimey

Posted onPosted on 12th Jan

George Nelson and Russ Davis, the Mansfield brothers-in-law aiming to row unsupported across the Atlantic Ocean from Portugal to Sint Maarten, have been hit by further problems – the weather and issues with their drinking water!

The rowers, known as Oar Blimey, are aiming to raise £250,000 for dementia charities.

Having been forced to stay in Gran Canaria over Christmas to replace faulty equipment, the duo are now struggling to overcome unexpected winds blowing in the ‘wrong’ direction.

At the end of last week they posted on Facebook: “The wind has turned 180 degrees… The weather appears to have it in for us this week! It’s hot and muggy and the usually predictable trade winds (which blow from the north-east in the Atlantic at this time of year) are notably absent. The winds are blowing from the south-west, and are pushing us backwards!

“We spent all night on the para anchor and drifted six miles backwards. It took a full day of hard rowing to pull this mileage back!
“We’ll struggle to make 12 miles per day. Woefully, we’re unlikely to reach our intended target of the halfway point in time for Russ’s birthday on Tuesday.”
On Saturday they added: “What a struggle it’s been trying to prevent ourselves from going backwards. We lost 10 miles yesterday, pretty awful!”
To make matters worse Russ found that their water in a 20-litre container was turning green and had to be thrown away.
George said: “We’re going to wash the container, and refill it with water. Disappointingly, our electric water maker can’t help us, as we only have one working battery and it would completely drain it.
“So we’re going to use our emergency hand pump water maker. It’ll take us at least five days to manually replenish this amount of water, plus keep everything else going.
“We’re determined to carry on though… There’s no stopping us now!
Earlier in the week the Mansfield Town FC fans were delighted to spot a dorado (blue and yellow, just like the Stags’ colours)  swimming under their boat.
 George and Russ set off on a three-month adventure of a lifetime on 1st December, aiming to row unsupported across the Atlantic Ocean and raise £250,000 for two dementia charities. They will each row for two hours at a time and then rest in between.

The 3,500-mile challenge began in front of a small group of supporters in Portugal and the duo want to reach Sint Maarten in the Caribbean.

Team Oar Blimey are rowing in a Rannoch Adventure R20, which is just 6.5m long and 1.2m wide, in their bid to help Our Dementia Choir with Vicky McClure and Ladybrook Enterprises.

The rowers can be tracked at or download the YB Races app and add their race, “Oar Blimey Atlantic Ocean Challenge 2023”.

To find out more about the rowing challenge or to help support the cause, visit where you can make a donation or find them on Facebook at