In a race with a 25% failure rate, incredibly, all our Devizes to Westminster (DW) teams have conquered the 125 mile course with its 77 portages.
Mark started with the weekend off on Friday with the first leg of the four day race, as he was competing K1). Saturday morning saw early early starts from the straight-through K2 teams of Kirsten and Irene, Ray and Sam and Neil and Will. Battling illness, Kirsten and Irene sensibly decided to take advantage of the option of the second tide. That allowed them to take a break during the early hours of Sunday morning. The other two teams carried on through the night, making it to Westminster around 10.30 on Sunday morning.
Ray and Sam were the first to finish in a final time of 26.44, having had a relatively simple journey through. This left them 85th overall (out of 160 starters). Neil and Will had picked up an injury which led to 5 swims during the last few hours. Finally, despite being in sight of the finish, the safety crews decided they should not get back on the water, so they carried their boat for the last kilometre or so, including having to cross over Westminster Bridge to get an official time! They completed in 24.14, leaving them 53rd overall, and 20th (of 77) in the veteran class. Irene and Kirsten wouldn’t let illness get the better of them, so took a break and went for the second time. This left them with a finishing time of 38.12 (including rest time), and a finishing position of 118 overall, and 7th in the Ladies Class and 1st in the Veteran Ladies Class!
In the meantime, Mark was still going in the 4 day race, finishing on Easter Monday in a time of 22.06, leaving him 42nd of 86 overall.
We’re hugely proud of them all – this is a great effort by them and all their support teams.