Five In A Row Atlantic Ocean rowers’ achievements rewarded at Westminster and Holyrood

AN INCREDIBLE voyage across the Atlantic Ocean has been recognized by the Scottish and British Parliaments.

Ian Baird, Duncan Hughes, Ross McKinney and Clive Rooney of North Berwick and Fraser Potter of Dunkeld rowed 3,000 miles from the Canary Islands to Antigua in 36 days, three hours and 33 minutes.

The team – called Five In A Row – took on the grueling challenge of raising money for Reverse Rett.

Eliza, the daughter of team member Ross, lives with Rett Syndrome, a neurological condition that most often strikes previously healthy girls between their first and second birthdays, leaving them with multiple disabilities and complexities for life.

The fundraiser raised nearly £50,000 for the good cause and East Lothian MP Kenny MacAskill and county MSP Paul McLennan highlighted the success.

Both politicians presented motions, which were supported by colleagues.

Mr MacAskill’s motion read: “That this Assembly congratulate Ian Baird, Duncan Hughes, Ross McKinney, Fraser Potter and Clive Rooney of the North Berwick Coastal Rowing Club, known as Five In A Row, for completing third place in the 2021 Talisker Atlantic Challenge; understands that the five men made the 3,000 mile journey from La Gomera in Spain to Antigua in the Caribbean in 36 days, three hours and 33 minutes, each in turn having slept two hours; notes that the group finished third out of 36 boats and describes the trip as the hardest thing they have ever done, as falling off the boat would have been fatal as the craft could not turn around fast enough to find a crew member in the darkness; commends the fundraising efforts the band have made to get them to the starting line, with additional funds raised going to the charity Reverse Rett; and wishes the band the best of luck in their future.

While Mr McLennan’s motion, which was backed by MSP Colin Beattie of Musselburgh and South Scotland MSP Martin Whitfield, reads: ‘Let Parliament congratulate the rowers of North Berwick in the team, Five InA Row, for their incredible achievement in crossing the finish line and finishing third in one of the toughest rowing events in the world, the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge; notes that the challenge saw the team row 3,000 miles across the Atlantic, taking 36

days, three hours and 33 minutes; understands the team raised £35,690 for Reverse Rett, a charity focused on advocacy and research to help provide treatments and a cure for Rett syndrome; and congratulates team members Ian Baird, Duncan Hughes, Ross McKinney, Clive Rooney and Fraser Potter for their accomplishment.