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British Royal Navy comes to Rescue of British Rower

Travel News Asia 15 August 2005

Virgin Atlantic Airways, sponsor of the Solo Challenge record attempt, has reported that HMS CUMBERLAND, a Royal Navy ship came to the rescue of Oliver Hicks on Friday afternoon. Oliver, from Thorpeness in Suffolk, is attempting to become the youngest and fastest person to row solo across the North Atlantic west to east.

Oliver, who is 23 years old, is making the 3000-mile crossing to Falmouth, England and was on day 78 of his gruelling journey on the 12 August when he saw the ship passing and decided to radio them in and ask for assistance. The ship sent a small sailing boat over to Olivers boat and whilst resupplying him with food and drink, they also gave him a health check.

Severe weather conditions have delayed Olivers record attempt, which meant he was at risk of running out of vital food supplies before he arrived back in England.

Sir Richard Branson, Chairman of Virgin Atlantic, said, I was thrilled to hear the news that Oliver had received some more supplies to keep him going on his journey. I spoke with him on Friday afternoon and we had a chat about his progress and his recent resupply I was very pleased to hear him in such good spirits!

Captain Simon Ancona, the Commanding Officer of HMS CUMBERLAND, commented, It was a brave decision to attempt to cross the Atlantic single handily but sometimes these things do not go according to plan and the maritime environment can be most unforgiving. Luckily HMS CUMBERLAND was on hand to lend assistance and we were delighted to do so.

See other recent news regarding: Virgin Atlantic

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