Belgian brothers to row across the Atlantic Ocean

Belgian brothers to row across the Atlantic Ocean
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Two brothers from the city of Ghent in the East Flanders province, Bernard and Damien Van Durme, will cross the Atlantic Ocean in a rowing boat in about 50 days.

The journey will be around 5,000 kilometres, which will take them about 50 days. The brothers are in the final stages of preparation, and are leaving from Belgium to the United Kingdom and back on a three-day practice trip.

The brothers will compete in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, dubbed ‘the world’s toughest row’. “We have always dreamed of this. When we heard a competition was organised, we did not have to think for long," they said, reports VRT NWS.

A boat used for rowing across the ocean is firmer than a classic rowing boat. "In traditional rowing, speed is important, meaning the boats must be very light," said Bernard Van Durme. "Ocean rowing boats are built fairly wide because they have to be able to withstand severe weather conditions,” he added.

"The journey can be dangerous," Bernard said. "If the weather is bad, we can hide in the cabin at the back of the boat. We will also sleep there, because the back does not go up and down as fast as the front," he added, reports Radio 2.

"We are now training very hard because we have to prepare ourselves physically. We need enough muscle to avoid injuries, but our mental health is also very important," Bernard said.

"It will not be easy to spend so many months together in a small space. That is why we have already started training ourselves to solve conflicts right away. It is important to express our frustrations immediately," he added.

Maïthé Chini

The Brussels Times

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