The ORS Int. is the official adjudicator of ocean rowing records for Guinness World Records

 


 

 

 

REUNITED WITH LOVED ONES

10 August 2004

 

Four British rowers who survived a hurricane in the mid-Atlantic have been reunited with their families.

The rowers were plucked from the sea by rescuers after the storm hit their boat "like a missile" and tore it apart.
Rowers
Mark Stubbs, Pete Bray, Jonathan Gornall and John Wills flew into Southampton Airport where they were hugged and kissed by wives and girlfriends.

The men had been attempting to row across the Atlantic west to east.
They were just 300 miles from the finish line when a 60ft rogue wave smashed into their craft - the Pink Lady - off the south coast of Ireland.

Mark Stubbs with his family

The ferocity of the wave broke the craft in two, plunging the men into the water in heavy seas.

"We were lying in the cabin listening to the waves coming in. Most of the waves were benign and went with the boat but there were rogue waves," Mr Gornall said.

"We then heard one coming sounding like an express train and then there were twin detonations and the next thing I was in the water and I knew something catastrophic had happened.

"I thought at the time 'I do not think I can hold my breath much longer'."
 

 
From left, Mark Stubbs, Pete Bray, John Wills and Jonathan Gornall

Former SAS diver Pete Bray, 48, from Bridgend, south Wales, twice dived into the broken craft to get the crew's life raft and survival kit.

"For me and the others, he is a bit of a hero," Mr Gornall said of his crewmate.

The men also paid tribute to the Falmouth coastguard, the RAF Nimrod and the skipper of the Scandinavia Reefer vessel which came to their rescue.


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