Some frequently asked questions about rowing across the Tasman
How long will it take to row?
Between 2 and 6 weeks, depending on conditions and keenness. It is expected there may be at least two storm systems during the row, each of them will result in about 2-3 days of sitting on a sea anchor, which will hinder progress.
How big is the boat?
10.5 metres from bow to stern. There are three rowing positions and two cabins.
Where do the rowers sleep?
There are two cabins, one at each end of the boat. They are pretty small, and can accommodate 2 people when necessary but it's preferred to only have one rower occupying a cabin at a time. Typically crews row 2hrs and sleep 2hrs, and repeat until they reach land. Although this may seem like very little sleep, it gives a total of 12 hours each day for sleep or rest.
What do the rowers eat while at sea?
Peanuts and olive oil. High fat foods are best as they provide twice as much energy from fat as carbohydrates of the same weight.
What will the team do in a storm?
Put out a sea anchor, and wait it out inside. Read a book, play cards, or just catch up on the sleeping and eating.
Will there be sharks?
Sharks have been sighted by the kayakers that crossed the Tasman sea in 2007. We expect to see some, however they should not pose a direct danger to the boat. There certainly will be barnacles, though.
Why do the team want to do it?
Will you row naked?
The Tasman can be quite cold and wavy, so the naked rowing used in the Atlantic may not be suitable. But if we're warm enough, then we'll certainly give it a shot!
Is this the first team to row the Tasman?
No, the Tasman has been rowed first time from Hokianga to Australia to Colin Quincey in 1977. An Australian 4-person team Base3 rowed from Hokianga to Sydney in 2008 in 31 days. Olly Hicks rowed from Tasmania to Stewart island in 96 days. Shaun Quincey followed in his fathers foot steps in 2010 and rowed from Australia to 90-mile beach in Northland, New Zealand in 54 days. This would be the first team to row from Australia to New Zealand and, hopefully, do it faster than the others. This row is longer by the virtue of rowing from the Sydney Harbour bridge to Auckland harbour bridge, which requires rowing around Cape Reinga and down the east coast of the North Island.
What happens if you capsize?
The boat is self-righting, filled with ballast (fresh water). Therefore it should right itself quickly. It is important to tie things to the boat and wear a harness in unsettled weather to avoid losing equipment and rowers.
How many of you are there in the team?
There are four in the team: Nigel Cherrie (team leader), James Blake, Andrew McCowan and Martin Berka. Rob Hamill, winner of the inaugural Atlantic Rowing Race in 1997, is the team director.
Won't you be bored?
Boredom will likely be our number one mental problem, at least until we get to the coast of New Zealand.
How many rowers does it take to fill a poo bucket?
Guess the team will find out.