Jersey men complete 3,000-mile Atlantic Challenge dubbed 'toughest rowing race on earth' in 54 days

  • ITV Channel's Will Tullis speaks to the two Jersey men who completed a 3000-mile rowing challenge across the Atlantic which took 54 days in total

Two men from Jersey have completed a 3000-mile rowing challenge known by some as "the toughest rowing race on earth".

Steve Hayes and Peter Wright took 54 days 16 hours and 45 minutes to complete the Atlantic Challenge - arriving in Antigua - the finish line - just before midnight local time on Saturday (4 February).

They spent the duration of the challenge on board the 23-foot boat, where they slept and ate.

Steve, a hotel manager, and Peter, who works in finance, set off on 12 December.

The challenge started in La Gomera in the Canary Islands and finished in Antigua in the Caribbean.

The two men from Jersey were at sea during Christmas and New Year - and Steve even missed his daughter's sixteenth birthday in the name of the challenging feat.

But seeing their friends and family at the finish line made the sacrifice feel worth it they said.

"We came to the finishing line, saw lots of familiar faces and got a photograph of our wobbly legs. And then had a burger and a beer, which was amazing", Peter told ITV News.

"Steve's wife and his little girl were there and my dad was there to see us on the finishing line in was special."

Peter and Steve lit flares as they arrived in Antigua on Saturday night Credit: Atlantic Campaigns

Two Jersey charities will benefit from their endeavours.

More than £5,000 has been raised for Durrell Wildlife Trust and Macmillan Cancer Support Jersey.

The duo are now looking to sell the boat - named Dragonfish - to raise extra funds for the charities.

"The boat has served us well. It has never capsized and it lasted this challenge", Peter said.

"Anyone wanting to row an ocean in an absolutely reliable boat please hit us up because it's very much for sale."

But the 54 days were not without their challenges.

Sleep deprivation, GPS failures and troubles with the boat's steering system were among some of the obstacles the duo faced over their almost eight weeks at sea.

Peter and Steve have both completed endurance challenges before, including Ironmans, marathons, triathlons and Channel swims.

But for now, it's time for a well-earned rest, and a drink or two in the Caribbean sun.

"I'm taking up lawn bowls next...I need a rest", said Peter.

You can find out more about Peter and Steve's fundraiser and donate here.

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