Race Day 57 – August 2

Posted on August 4, 2018 in Cockleshell Endeavour, Great Pacific Race 2018, Pacific Terrific

Weather: Pacific Terrific will have 18-21 kt winds from the East North-East with 8-9 ft east north-easterly seas.  Cockleshell Pacific Endeavour will have 16-17 kt winds from the East North-East with 5-6 ft north-easterly / east north-easterly seas.  


There are many milestones that our crews achieve during their Pacific crossings.  These include but are not limited to moments such as the halfway mark or achieving another distance based milestone such as the 500 or 1,000 nm rowed, or equally the 1,000 or 500 nm to go marks.

For one of our rowers there is another major and rather special milestone that has just been achieved.  Mick Dawson has now spent 500 days ocean rowing.  That’s 500 days at sea in an ocean rowing boat!  And he is not done yet.

Here is a list of his ocean rowing accomplishments before embarking on the Great Pacific Race with Stephen Sparkes:

October 2001 – December 2001
Atlantic Ocean East to West
Mick Dawson and Steve Dawson on Mrs. D
70 Days 9 Hours 12 Minutes

June 2003
Pacific Ocean West to East – incompleted
Mick Dawson – solo on Mrs. D
12 Days 18 Hours 35 Minutes

May 2004 – August 2004 – incompleted
Pacific Ocean West to East
Mick Dawson – solo on Mrs. D Viking Spirit
109 Days 4 Hours

December 2005 – February 2006
Atlantic Ocean East to West
Mick Dawson and Andrew Morris on Charmed Life
61 Day 2 Hours 50 Minutes

May 2009 – November 2009
Pacific Ocean West to East
Mick Dawson and (GPR Race Director) Chris Martin on Bojangles
189 Days 10 Hours 39 Minutes

June 2018 – ?
Pacific Ocean East to West
Mick Dawson and Stephen Sparkes
STILL ROWING

If we add up all of the days, hours and minutes Mick has spent in an ocean rowing boat before the Great Pacific Race, the total is 442 Days 21 Hours 16 Minutes.  This means that as soon as Mick reached Day 57, Hour 2 and Minute 44 of the Great Pacific Race then he achieved this monumental milestone of 500 days.

Before starting the race Mick was #11 on the all-time-list of most days at sea in an ocean rowing boat and now that he has joined the 500 club he lies in 7th place. We anticipate that he will move into #5 by the end of the Great Pacific Race, between our own Roz Savage with 512 days and Alex Bellini with 540 days.  We should note that the person at the top of the list is the Safety Officer for the Great Pacific Race, Erden Eruc with 968 days at sea in an ocean rowing boat.  That does not include his time in on a sail boat.

With all this time in an ocean rowing boat, Mick had taken pen to paper and shared some of his experiences in his book, Battling the Oceans in a Rowboat:  Crossing the Atlantic and North Pacific on Oars and Grit which is available on Amazon, in both English and French and as an audiobook.  Erden read Mick’s book while he was on the safety yacht for the Great Pacific Race.  Here is part of his review of Mick’s book:

“Rowing the Pacific” was a captivating read, an unputdownable page turner which gave me a window to the life of an amazing man, a fellow ocean rower whom I finally had the honor to meet in person in Monterey. Mick Dawson was soft spoken, all the while wielding a firm handshake.

“Why do it” and “what next” are the two questions that all ocean rowers face once they step off their rowboats. Of course, if they ever hold an elementary school presentation, then they will also be obliged to answer the ubiquitous “how do you go to the bathroom?” This book, with its varied yarns of daunting challenges and survival in the face of insurmountable odds, will give the reader a good idea about the why and the how.

If you would like to be carried into an alternate universe in the mind of a veteran of the Royal Marines, if concepts like duty, honor and quiet fortitude intrigue you, read this book. For Mick, repayment of the debt to those who didn’t come back, took the form of showing he hadn’t wasted the extra time he’d been granted. Proving worthy of a self-imposed challenge, was his way of finding meaning and a renewed purpose.

We congratulate Mick on this incredible milestone!  Keep Rowing Royal!

As for the three ladies of Team Pacific Terrific they continue their approach to the islands of Hawaii.  With just over 300 nm to go before touching land in Waikiki we think that they’re just starting to realise that all too soon they will be stepping off the boat and back into the land of showers as often requested, more than a couple of hours of sleep in one go and a bed that’s not bucking like a mule…all the time.

Hurricane HECTOR continues to be at the forefront of our minds and we check the latest updates eagerly as they arrive.  At present HECTOR is a major hurricane with wind speeds of 120 mph but expected to weaken slightly over the next few days. HECTOR is currently 1300 nm away from Pacific Terrific but is tracking west at around 10 kt.  HECTOR is currently expected to pass south and west of the Hawaiian islands and whilst strong winds and large waves will radiate out from the centre of the storm, by the time these waves arrive, the ladies of Pacific Terrific should be in Waikiki.  We stand ready to assist if needed but hoping that this is not required more than the usual trip out to the finish line off Diamond Head.

If you would like to buy team Pacific Terrific or Team Cockleshell Endeavour a lei to present to them on arrival in Waikiki? (or a pitcher of beer) then now you can.  We are thrilled to be able to offer this opportunity to anyone who can’t be in Hawaii to welcome the crew back to land.  It gives anyone the chance to make their presence felt in Hawaii and show your rower that you’re thinking of them. Buy a lei now by CLICKING HERE

GREAT PACIFIC RACE STANDINGS as of 19:00 (7 pm) PDT
1 Uniting Nations Row/ Isabel: FINISHED – 49 Days, 23 Hours, 15 Minutes
2 Pacific Terrific/ Danielle: ROWING – 305 NM to finish, Rowed 2123 NM
3 Cockleshell Pacific Endeavour / Bojangles: ROWING – 816 NM to finish, Rowed 1672 NM
Team Attack Poverty/ Anne:  RETIRED
Team Ripple Effect/ Ripple Effect: RETIRED