Sharples MD Mark Brocklehurst is no stranger to intense physical challenges, having competed in two Ironman Triathlons. His latest challenge is perhaps his toughest yet, however. In just under a month’s time, Mark is attempting to row 3,000 nautical miles from La Gomera in the Canary Isles, across the Atlantic to Antigua.
The Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge is considered the world’s toughest rowing race, and teams from all over the world are set to compete to be the first boat over the line.
Mark will be joined by his team members, Nick Griffiths, Finn Christo and Matt Nuttal, in a battle against the elements that will test each man to his physical and emotional limit.
The training has been intense, with Mark and his teammates fitting in physical sessions before, during and after work in a bid to get in physical shape for the race. With the start of the race not far off, preparations have been ramped up in a bid to meet the deadline.
The guys are rowing in aid of the Bolton Lads and Girls Club, a charity that is very close to Mark’s heart. Now over 100 years old, the Bolton Lads and Girls Club has been offering the youth of Bolton a place to go to seven nights a week, where they can join in sporting activities, fuel their creative sides, make friends and feel like they belong. It’s also a place where many can escape the harsh realities of their lives, and feel safe. It’s this aspect that Mark and the team are supporting.
They are hoping to raise £250,000 between them to help fund the club’s Junior Mentoring Project. The project offers vital support to many of Bolton’s most vulnerable young people, giving them an adult they can talk to about issues that affect them. For many, it is a life changing support line, and there is currently a waiting list of nearly 200 young people who wish to join the programme.
What the money will allow the club to do is help to do away with the waiting list, and give every child a mentor who they can rely on.
Check out this video to find our more about the challenge and also the fantastic work that the Bolton Lads and Girls Club do.
Here at Sharples, we’re fully behind Mark and wish all the very best of luck and a safe return back home! We’re going to be hosting a launch party for the team, this Wednesday 6th November, as the boat will be on its way to the Canary Isles in the early hours of Thursday morning.
If you want to donate, you can visit Mark’s page here. And don’t forget that you can also follow the guys on Twitter and Facebook as they prepare for the biggest challenge of their lives. The team are eager to reach 1,000 “likes” on their Facebook page before they set sail on 7th December, so if you could help them reach that goal it would be a real morale boost.
Good luck Mark, from all of us at Sharples!!