Go James! You’re ‘oarsome’

News has reached me of an ‘oarsome’ challenge that will see our neonatal unit benefitting.

Friends James Tordoff and Chris Nicholl are taking on the heroic task of rowing more than 3,000 miles across the Atlantic - despite never having set foot in a rowing boat.

What’s more they are aiming to finish the race in just 45 days.

James is taking part in the challenge in aid of our very own Bradford Hospitals Charity, to raise funds for our Neonatal Unit, while Chris is supporting Centrepoint, which helps homeless youngsters. The pair have set themselves the target of raising £100,000.

Apparently, it has been James' lifelong dream to take part in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, known as the world's toughest row, since he watched competitors cross the finish line as a child. And he managed to convince Chris to join him when the pair went on a mountain biking holiday in Canada.

James was inspired to support our Neonatal Unit after his nephew and godson, who was born prematurely, spent five weeks being cared for in 2016.

He visited the unit recently and told Let’s Talk: “The care from doctors, nurses and midwives was amazing. They touch so many lives and I can’t think of another cause I would rather support.

He and Chris, who have revealed they have never rowed before, are hoping to inspire others, by showing them that anything is possible.

They have now begun an intense training programme for the event, which sets off from La Gomera in the Canary Islands in December 2019, including daily trips to the gym at 5.30am.

Although there will be support teams following competitors on the route, the pair know that the minute they call for help they are out of the race!

We’ll be bringing you further updates of their fund-raising – and of course we’ll be following the event closely once it gets underway.

In the meantime, here is their fund-raising page: http://bit.ly/2Ee9epm