Endurance Limits

Class
Boat Name
Ohana
Boat Number
1
Causes
Great Ormond Street Hospital
Matthews Friends
Sponsors
Ascential
Website
www.endurancelimits.net/
  • Team Ocean Hearts arrival

    Ocean Hearts have arrived! Their official finish time is 46 days 17 hours 47 minutes. More stories from their arrival in tonight's news post.

    Posted 7 months ago

Team Members

Name
Darren Clawson
Occupation
Police Officer
Age at Start
40
Born in
UK
Representing
UK
Lives in
Hertfordshire, UK

In 2007 I ran the entire England / Wales border – 189 miles in 5 days. It was my first ever attempt at an endurance event and I did it because people said I couldn’t. Simple as that. There were lots of other ‘where’s what’s and and whys’ surrounding the run but the that’s why I finished. I was cold and  alone for long periods after the other runner had dropped out at 130 miles. I also ran the last 24 miles with a torn quad and finished hobbling at best, but finish I did!

In 2009 I entered and competed in the 275km Brazilian Jungle Marathon. I dropped out on the 4th day to help medivac another competitor out of the jungle. I considered this a failure and so returned in 2011 where I finished in the top 10 despite breaking my arm during a bad fall on the second day which also resulted in on 40 plus spikes being driven into the muscle of the same arm. I finished because I had promised my daughter Bethany that I would. I was in agony, but I’d given my word, so I finished. 

In 2014 I competed in the 250km Peruvian Jungle Marathon. Long story short, before I left I kissed my son Theo and told him I’d bring him a finishers medal home, so I’ll give you one guess how that one turned out despite a bought of altitude sickness before the start. 

I’m an ordinary guy. I’m not in any way special other than being stubborn in a way that most people struggle to comprehend. With regard to obstacles over come? My other son Hadley is basically dying in slow motion through a rare and very severe neurological condition and has been sine 2007. That upsets me a great deal. 

I also like alcohol and fast food, neither of which the help with the training…..

I bring to the table a willingness to be who I am with my team. Honesty, vulnerability and  hopefully as captain a bit of leadership. I put the team together, and I have driven this project from the get go but we are 100% a team. Completely interdependent and all equally important to the success of this project. I recognise the massive value each of the other lads has and I try to ensure that they all know that they are critical components in this, and are valued massively by me and each other. When things are going wrong people need to know and be told that, those around them believe in them, I guess I’m the one that will do that.

Name
Raf Schildermans
Occupation
Engineer
Age at Start
38
Born in
Belgium
Representing
Belgium
Lives in
Hasselt, Belgium

My first encounter with endurance sport was the ‘100 km march of death’ in Belgium. After a dessert run in Oman, I took a sabbatical in 2011, which was a long endurance year. I started cycling across both islands of New Zealand, took my bike to the Middle East and rode back home. I did 12.000 km in less than 6 months straight through the mountains of  New Zealand, Jordan, Turkey, through the desserts of Syria, all the way back to Belgium, where I start my training for the ‘Jungle marathon’ in Brazil later that year. I finished as 4th and although I swore never to return to Brazil, I ran the famous marathon for a second time in 2014. Short distances or sprints are not my cup of tea. Giving up on the long run is not an option.

I met Darren and Arron in my first Jungle Marathon. I will never forget the hours and hours I ran through the Jungle with Darren. We literally pulled each other through it. Finally we made it and more important a new bond was made between us. It was on a rooftop in Rio de Janeiro, after the race in 2014 that the three of us came up with the plan to row an ocean. The idea was not new for me, but it was the first time that I found people who were as enthusiastic as me about the idea, or even more enthusiastic. Still in the in the flush of victory, and intoxicated by the caipirinhas we started making plans. Thanks to the initiative of Darren to organise everything we are now as far as where we are now. During one of the preparation meetings at Darren’s house, I met Matt, and … from the beginning I saw that he was mad enough to join our team!

Apart from all the dangers of the ocean, which are the most obvious for most people, storms, sharks, capsizing, physical exhaustion, blisters… The biggest challenge will be the strain we will feel as a team. It will be a huge social experiment, and the elements which are not in our hands will push us to the limit. 

Maybe, physically I am not the strongest member of the team, but my advantage is that I never worry in advance. I don’t worry about dangers or pain and in the moment itself, I just keep on going. Till now that attitude brought me from the Middle East to Belgium on my bike, it pushed me through the jungle, I hope it will help my over the ocean.

What will motivate me in those dark hours of the challenge will be the thought of many beers and a meal, celebrating with my team mates and  loved ones waiting for me in Honolulu!

Name
Matt Knight
Occupation
Personal Trainer
Age at Start
40
Born in
UK
Representing
UK
Lives in
Nottingham, UK

It all started when I was 15. I found a passion for boxing and soon realised I was ok at it. It came to an end when I was 21, and needing something else to focus on, I took to the trails and started running. This still wasn’t enough and I soon become bored with it. I needed a challenge…

In 2011 I gained entry to the “Marathon des sables”; 155 miles running across the Sahara Desert.

On day 2 of this race I suffered a stress fracture on my left foot and deep blisters on my right foot, I realised that this is what pushing your limits is all about! I pushed on day and night and finished strong. I was hooked!

I met Darren and Arron in Peru at the Jungle marathon. It was at breakfast at the hotel where we first met before the race. It was laughs and jokes from the beginning. Darren and Arron had jungle experience so at the start I ran with them.

I should have continued this on day two but my legs wanted to go fast! The damage was done, I’d gone into severe dehydration and on day 3 it was Arron that got me through stage 3.

Waking up on two drips had finished the race for me, but this was the most positive race for me as I met two great guys.

Darren mentioned the Great Pacific Race to me whilst we were racing in the Jungle. Shortly after my return to the UK he phoned me asking if I’d want to be part of this epic adventure. It was simple, no thought just a straight YES! I was already thinking about the next big race and I knew Darren would be able to get Team Endurance Limits a place.

My biggest challenge for the Great Pacific Race will be SEA SICKNESS! I even get sick on the bus – ask Darren and Arron!

I know about the other risks and have accepted that this is a very dangerous race. However I do worry for my teammates. I’ve always competed as an individual and only myself to worry about. I know I am going to have to experience my friends in pain and discomfort and that will be tough.

I am a hard worker – a grafter.

I will row my fingers to the bone. My friend has made this happen for us and I am not going to let him or my other team mates down.

If jobs need doing I will be the first up on my feet to perform them, whatever the weather.

I also bring my “winning smile” to the table. How could we NOT win?? 

Name
Arron Worbey
Occupation
Police Officer
Age at Start
35
Born in
UK
Representing
UK
Lives in
Hertfordshire, UK

I have always been into martial arts since being a child but I didn’t take up any sort of endurance sports until my late 20’s which was a complete baptism of fire to say the least. I sat in the pub one night with Darren discussing how we could raise money for Great Ormond street Hospital after helping his son. He said to me “We need to do something that will grab peoples attention something extreme!” After going through google he came up with the jungle marathon Brazil recognised as one of the toughest multi stage ultras in the world. Being very drunk by this point I told him yes. My life was never the same again.

I clearly remember my first day training for it! I got on the treadmill and within a mile I’d had it. At that point I realised I was in for the battle of my life just to get to the start line!  With a lot of sacrifice and commitment  I have since competed or completed in numerous marathons and four jungle multi ultras in south America.

I have had varying degrees of great personal success and spectacular failure in the jungles one of which was being attacked by a swarm of jungle wasps. I received dozens of stings went in to anaphylactic shock and spent several hours unconscious on the jungle floor!  Although you are racing against others the real battle is with yourself and finding what your limits are and pushing yourself beyond them. I am immensely proud of my achievements out there and have always giving everything with a lot of blood sweat and tears on the way.

Every aspect of this race will be a challenge.  As much as I love the guys, being on an 8 meter boat for seven weeks with no privacy – not even for the toilet will be a strain. I have always liked my own space so this will be challenge. Plus there’s the lack of food and sleep every night. But, I am resourceful and determined. I believe rowing will suit my natural physique and I have the mental experience/toughness to deal with what the sea will throw at me. I will be the one on the team that might not be as fast or strong, but come hell or high water I will keep rowing!

The thought of seeing my family will keep me motivated every day of the race. The quicker I get to that finish line – the quicker I can hug my two beautiful children and spend some much needed time with them!

Second to that will be thought of a very cold beer!