Greenhithe's Pete Staples receives honour from PM
Pete and his team of Trans-Indian-Ocean rowers has received a North Shore City Award from PM John Key
"On 19th April 2009 4 of us set out in a bid to become the first 4 man crew to row the Indian Ocean. We are competing in the inaugural Indian Ocean Rowing Race to raise some much needed funds and awareness for man’s number one killer, prostate cancer. All being well the race should have taken approx 60-70 days and cover approx 3,568 miles (5,742 kms), from Geraldton (Western Australia) to Mauritius...that's a long way and a long time to be sat on our prostates!
"We had a custom made ocean rowing boat which was 8.8m in length and 1.9m wide. The total weight fully laden was in excess of 3 tonnes. We rowed in 2 hour shifts with 2 people on the oars at any one time for 24 hours a day. We broke our seat sliders on day 4 which meant we had to haul ourselves across the ocean, lost approx 20 days of food leaving us on half rations for about 6 weeks. Came across large unforgiving seas which capsized us 2 weeks from the end and were on water rationing as well. But if it was easy then why have more people set foot on the moon than rowed across the Indian Ocean. We also came close to being mowed down by a bulk carrier which didn't see us. We had to take evasive action and when you're only travelling 1.5 - 2 knots it wasn't the quickest of turns!
"We got to Mauritius after 81 days 4 hours and 2 minutes later, coming 2 place in the race of 11 starters. Only 5 boats completed the race with some of them having to retire from either broken equipment or injury. We lost in excess of 100kg between us and I lost 21kg in body weight.
"To raise awareness for prostate cancer was an absolute privilege and to be recommended by the PM for a North Shore City Award in the Health and Well Being category is a real honour."
For more information and pictures check out www.rowingforprostate.com
When he isn't rowing, Pete is a spin instructor, here...
View the photo gallery here...