Midhurst team in Talisker Whisky Atlantic challenge

The Atlantic Polo Team. L-R Fergus Scholes, Bobby Melville, James Glasson and Henry Brett. CONTRIBUTED PICTURE
The Atlantic Polo Team. L-R Fergus Scholes, Bobby Melville, James Glasson and Henry Brett. CONTRIBUTED PICTURE

A MIDHURST resident and professional polo player is getting ready to row 3,000 miles across the Atlantic in aid of children and horses.

James Glasson, 39, is preparing to break the record in the number one ocean endurance race, the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge – a race against 20 teams from around the world.

James will be rowing in a seven-metre by two-metre specially-made rowing boat.

His companions in the epic and gruelling challenge are the former captain of the England polo team, Henry Brett, and professional polo players Bobby Melville, who will act as captain, and former rower Fergus Scholes.

The rowing challenge is to raise money for children in the UK and disadvantaged countries.

James and his Atlantic Polo Team will be replacing horsepower with manpower, raising money in aid of charities The Brooke, Right to Play, and the Hilton in the Community Foundation.

James said: “Having already sailed this route, unfortunately I know what to expect and this is going to be a big challenge.

“I am really looking forward to getting on the boat and achieving something on this scale and firmly believe this is mental and not physical.”

James is the business director for Mantra 
Interiors, based in Sussex.

He is the self-proclaimed adventurer of the team and an avid sailor, having already sailed across the Atlantic in 2011, climbed numerous mountains and also reached the summit of Aconcagua – the highest mountain in 
the Americas.

The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge takes place every two years.

Teams row more than 3,000 nautical miles across the world’s second-largest ocean, heading west from San Sebastian in La Gomera, Spain, to Nelson’s Dockyard English Harbour, Antigua.

Once they leave the 
safety of the harbour on December 2, they are on their own in the vast ocean, against the mercy of the elements.

No outside support is permitted once the race begins and rowers will be disqualified in the event of requiring support.

No boat is allowed to receive any extra supplies during 
the race, including food, water or equipment.

One of the toughest races on Earth, more people have been into space or climbed Everest than rowed the Atlantic.

It began in 1966 when Sir Chay Blyth and John Ridgeway made history by becoming the first men to row across the mighty ocean.

With only one support boat on the water, rowers are so spread out it could take up to three days to reach a boat.

The brave teams will face blisters, salt rash, sharks and sleep deprivation.