A TEAM of rowers from Worthing attempting to row the Atlantic have been airlifted to safety after their boat sprang a leak during horrendous weather conditions.
Team Atlantic Splash are safe and well after the dramatic rescue last night, which brought an end to their marathon challenge.
Their boat had started to take on water in the air compartments and had affected the electrical system, with winds reaching 30mph during poor weather.
Neal Marsh, Bastien Leclair, Marc Alderman, Tom Hyland and Terry Munson had begun the 3,000 mile Talisker Whiskey Challenge on Wednesday, setting-off from La Gomera in the Canary Islands.
Trudi Starling, who had worked with the team to organise publicity before the event, said it was a ‘huge shame’.
She said: “The boat has not capsized, it is virtually impossible to do that. But the water got into the electrics and without that, they wouldn’t have had any means of communication.
“The weather is appalling. I’m told it is like being in a washing machine at the moment, and the weather won’t be ideal for a few days yet.”
A statement from Atlantic Campaigns, organisers of the Talisker Whiskey Challenge, read: “Team Atlantic Splash have been rescued from their ocean rowing boat Mission Atlantic today, Monday, December 9. This was due to their boat starting to take on water in the air compartments. The team members are safe and well.
“The team’s contact persons have all been informed about the situation. More information will be provided later today.”