The ORS Int. is the official adjudicator of ocean rowing records for Guinness World Records

 


     

TEAM PAN ATLANTIC


 

Niall
 McCann



DOB: 04/10/1981
Height: 182 cm
Weight: 77 kgs
Profession: Recruitment Consultant

 

 

James
 Burge



DOB: 27/02/1981
Height: 190 cm
Weight: 96 kgs
Profession: Recruitment Consultant

 
 
 
 

Education: Meole Brace School, Shrewsbury, Shropshire
Shrewsbury VIth Form College, Shrewsbury, Shropshire

 University of Bristol (BSc Hons Zoology)

Resides: I spent my formative years in Shrewsbury where my family live to this              day. Having spent 3 years at the University of Bristol I decided to stay on
             in the South West and adopt Bristol as my new home.

Having graduated in Zoology from Bristol University, I spent some time as a field biologist before making the painful decision to leave the impoverished world of biology to make a living. Working in an office from 9-6 every day fuelled my desire to offset the hours spent at a computer with hours challenging myself in the outdoors.
 My main passions in life are biology and climbing, and until James suggested rowing the Atlantic I spent the majority of my free time either climbing or pursuing wild animals across the countryside.I have been on various expeditions, including climbing in the Alps, cycling in the Himalayas and canoeing in the Yukon, but nothing that Iíve done compares to the challenge of rowing the Atlantic.

The Atlantic row and everything that comes with it has come to totally dominate my life in the most positive way, and although I still find time to do a bit of climbing, the majority of my thoughts and activities are in some way related to crossing the Atlantic.

I am very grateful to James Burge for suggesting that we enter the Atlantic Rowing Race 2007, as I would have been very unlikely to have thought of it myself! I have no prior rowing experience, but I hope that there will be some transferable skills from my previous experiences of adventure and adversity!

Not only am I grateful to James for suggesting the race to me, I am also very happy to be undertaking such a wonderful challenge with him. We have found our friendship strengthened by the common objective of competing in one of the most remarkable races in the world and having a lasting impact on a charitable cause that we both believe in.

     

Education: The Grange School and 6th Form, Bristol
Soundwell College, Bristol

Resides: Born and raised in Bristol.

Iíve never been 100% sure where my life was leading, after completing my A Levels I opted out of going to University and began work as a Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer at various Health centres around Bristol. During my school and 6th form years I enjoyed success at various sports playing football, rugby, and basketball at county level or higher, unfortunately a knee injury prevented me from pursuing any of these further and then I just lost interest.
For financial reasons I stopped working in the world of fitness and after trying out various other careers ended up in recruitment which is where I met Niall.  Until suggesting rowing the Atlantic (initially in jest may I add) I had no real purpose to my fitness regime despite training daily and following a strict diet, but now I have somewhere to focus all of my excess energy (thereís a lot) and more importantly have a goal to work towards.

Niall was an obvious person to ask regarding the row, frankly I donít know anyone else stupid enough to say yes! But also he is dedicated and passionate about the challenge which is taking over both of our lives. I also see it as a bonus that we havenít known each other for that long as we will have more to talk about whilst at sea, although the view of what makes an interesting story may differ between us!

  Iím very much looking forward to the challenge, and everything leading up to it, also it is an opportunity to raise money for a great cause. It feels like my life finally has direction, and this has been enhanced by Niall and me setting up our own charity, which is encouraging us to consider other challenges after this one to raise money for worthwhile conservation projects around the globe. I will never train aimlessly again!

 
         
 

 Niall and James met in January 2005 when Niall joined James at Sanderson Recruitment. For James, the pursuit of adventure had always been a burning ambition but he had never found the right companion to give his ambition some direction. In Niall, James had found a seasoned adventurer, and on the spur of the moment sent Niall an email link to Woodvale Events Ltd with the words: ďLetís do something stupid like this!Ē To Jamesí surprise, Niall replied with an affirmative response, and after a few tentative enquiries Pan Atlantic was born!

 

Niall and James Rowing their new boat for the first test-run in Bristol Harbour on weekend of March 10-11th 2007
                                                                (with Pete Bird of Atlantic Quest steering)       
 Photo courtesy of
Niall McCann