Four incredible guys are rowing the Indian Ocean - nonstop and unsupported - to raise funds and awareness for Young Onset Parkinson's Disease (YOPD).
So that they can undertake this huge challenge, they desperately need financial support. Any donation, however small is much appreciated.
Their journey starts in Western Australia and they will row 3,600 miles until they reach their destination in Port Louis, Mauritius. Less than 20 crews have successfully completed the crossing and they hope to do it less than 71 days, which is the current world row record.
What makes this journey even more incredible is that one of the men - Robin Buttery - has Parkinson's and he will be closely monitored by researchers from Oxford University. They will be conducting an important piece of research that will help them better understand how the neuro-muscular system copes and adapts to prolonged mental and physical stress. The research has the potential to redefine how Parkinson's disease is viewed in the future and provide better neuro-rehabilitation programmes (and hopefully send the search for a cure on a different path).
The other three crew members are all record breakers and come from all walks of life - firefighter, motivational speaker and business owner.
The four have several famous supporters/friends including BBC screen writer Paul Mayhew-Archer (who also has Parkinson's), Chris Martin, Sir Ranulph Fiennes O.B.E – to name a few. They are also being trained by renowned sports scientist and former Olympian, Professor Greg Whyte.
BBC screen writer, Paul Mayhew-Archer said: "We all find ways of defying our Parkinson’s. I make jokes about it. Robin Buttery has chosen to row across the Indian Ocean. I can’t help feeling my way is a bit easier. I am full of admiration for Robin, Billy, Barry and James. They are clearly four of the most incredibly courageous, inspirational and determined total lunatics on the planet."
Renowned explorer, Sir Ranulph Fiennes O.B.E. said: "Billy Taylor epitomises the modern-day adventurer. Not content with inspiring thousands during his record breaking Pacific Ocean Row in the inaugural Great Pacific Race, he has turned his attention to breaking the world speed record for rowing across the Indian Ocean, and in doing so, raising awareness of Young Onset Parkinson’s disease. With less than 50 people in the world having successfully rowed the Indian Ocean, Billy and the Indian Ocean Row 2017 crew will be joining an elite list of adventurers, and I am delighted to support Indian Ocean Row 2017 in their landmark crossing."
Former Olympian and renowned sports scientist, Greg Whyte said: “The boys have worked incredibly hard for this row – they’re driven and tenacious, which is crucial when undertaking a challenge of this enormity. They will be pushing their bodies to the absolute limit and the pressure on them to succeed will be immense. This is where their mental strength will be vital in overcoming any doubts or fears during the challenge. Having worked with Billy on his 2014 row across the Pacific, and with the pedigree that the crew already possess in the sport of Ocean rowing, I believe that they’re more than ready and I have no doubt they will succeed.”
The men hope to raise as much money as possible for this very worthy cause. Clear Trust (http://cleartrust.org.uk), a registered UK charity, will be collating the funds on behalf of the team. Clear Trust enable children and adults suffering neuro-developmental and co-ordination difficulties, brain injury, spinal damage or long-term neurological disorders to participate in physical exercise and rehabilitation programmes.
Thank you in advance for your support and donations - it is very much appreciated.
The Indian Ocean Row crew