After over a month at sea, three Scottish brothers raising money for Feedback Madagascat have set three World Records in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge – dubbed the toughest row in the world.
Not only are they the fastest trio to ever have rowed across the Atlantic Ocean, beating the previous record by a whopping six days, they are also the first three brothers to row any ocean, and the youngest trio to ever paddle their way across the Atlantic.
Ewan, Jamie and Lachlan MacLean, sons of acclaimed whisky writer and connoisseur Charles MacLean, set off from La Gomera in the Canary Islands on 12 December last year, spending Christmas and New Year in the middle of the ocean, and completed the epic 3,000-mile row to Antigua in exactly 35 days, nine hours and nine minutes.
The MacLeans overcame severe seasickness, battery issues, storms, dehydration and utter exhaustion – as well as the typical rowing blisters, aches and pains that come hand in hand with the endurance sport – to reach Antigua last night. The sound of Jamie’s pipes sounded their arrival on the horizon, and they made their way into shore to be welcomed by hoards of friends, family and well-wishers.
MD of Feedback Madagascar, Jamie Spencer OBE, said: "Ewan, Jamie and Lachlan are an amazing team, it seems like there's nothing they can't do."
"Their strength and determination have helped them beat this record at the same time as saving and transforming lives with every stroke. Every £5,000 raised pays for a freshwater borehole for a village in
Madagascar - that's freshwater for 3,000 people so far, and rising."
Feedback Madagascar has joined with Mary's Meals to deliver school meals to over 9000 pupils in almost 70 schools.
Three rural areas have been chosen for this project – Amoron’i Mania, Haute Matsiatra and Vatovavy-Fitovinany –representing the three principal regions where Feedback Madagascar currently works. These areas present very different geographical, socio-cultural and economic contexts.
The planned menu for the schools will include rice with pinto beans on Mondays and Fridays, rice with greens and peanut sauce on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and rice with lentils on Wednesday.
Managing director of Feedback Madagascar, Jamie Spencer, said: "It is fantastic that two charities from Argyll are partnering to launch this new project in Madagascar. Many of us take for granted that we will have three meals a day – with extra snacks when we feel peckish. Children in these areas will usually only eat once a day at most. Providing daily food at school will help the children to perform better in the classroom and feel safe in the knowledge that they will receive a nutritious meal every day the attend.”
Mary's Meals Founder, Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, said: “We are so incredibly thankful that the dedication of our supporters and the local knowledge and experience of our new partner has allowed us to reach many more children in Madagascar, who desperately need our support. I was lucky enough to meet the wonderful community surrounding just one of the new programme schools earlier this year.
Magnus added: “I am so glad and humbled that – thanks to the continued generosity and goodness of our supporters, volunteers and our new partner – we are able to transform the lives of children at this school, and many others throughout Madagascar.”
As part of our training for the 2019 Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, we launched a ‘Whisky for Water’ campaign to provide clean water to thousands in Madagascar, rowing up the West Coast of Scotland and ‘pillaging’ whisky from distilleries as we went.
Over the course of ten days, we covered about 300 miles, rowing from Lochranza on the Isle of Arran to Talisker on Skye, visiting the 16 distilleries that had very kindly donated whisky towards the campaign.
The donated whisky is being blended by a team of experts led by our father, Charles MacLean, and advised by the legendary Richard Paterson. We will release a film of the whole blending process, which is likely to lead to two or three distinctive expressions. The first batch of this unique and limited edition ‘Maclean’s Pillage’ blend will be auctioned by Royal Mile Whiskies; date (in early 2020) yet to be announced.
Every drop sold will make a difference. All funds raised will go towards life-saving fresh water boreholes in Madagascar, and every single bottle will pay for clean water for life for several Malagasy families. Want to find out more, or be one of the first to taste the blend? Register here for updates. Or make a bid: we are inviting supporters to make a ‘blind bid’, with the top 20 winning a unique bottle of ‘MacLean’s Pillage’, signed by Charles, Ewan, Jamie and Lachlan MacLean
Three Scottish brothers who will be rowing 3000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean officially launched their boat onto the much calmer waters of Loch Lomond.
The MacLean brothers, Jamie, Ewan and Lachlan who make up team BROAR, will be the first three brothers to row any ocean as they take on the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge this December.
Named the world’s toughest row, the brothers will be taking on this challenge in order to raise £250,000 for their chosen charities, Children 1st and Feedback Madagascar.
They will row day and night, repeating shifts of two hours of rowing and one hour of rest until reaching the other side. The crossing will take between 40 to 60 days through 40-foot waves, shark-infested waters and busy shipping lanes
Managing Director of Feedback Madagascar, Jamie Spencer, said: “What these three lads are doing is simply incredible. Not only is the training gruelling but the race itself will take an incredible toll on them both mentally and physically. To think that they are undertaking this challenge to help Feedback Madagascar continue our work is very humbling."
Eldest brother, Ewan said “We are really excited to launch this campaign, the interest in our challenge has been phenomenal and to have people show up today from the US, Germany and Poland means so much to us.”
To learn more about the Broar team and to support their campaign, please click here.