Bratton seafaring polo player's ordeal

Bratton man James Glasson has described as ‘hell’ the elements he and his three friends have been battling in the world’s toughest rowing race.

Mr Glasson, who was born in Trowbridge and grew up in Bratton, is currently one month into the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, which is a 3,000-mile race from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua.

The 40-year-old professional polo player is part of the Atlantic Polo Team with fellow polo players Bobby Melville, Henry Brett and Fergus Scholes, with the quartet up against 19 teams from around the world.

The challenge, renowned for its tough conditions, started on December 2 and will take about six weeks to complete, with the Atlantic Polo Team currently in third place overall.

Mr Glasson, who is now based in Sussex, said: “It has been pretty full on and having sailed it before I knew what to expect in terms of the ocean, but nothing can prepare you for being in just a two metre by seven metre rowing boat in those conditions.

“Being in the storm within a matter of days was hell. Sheer exhaustion combined with being locked in a tiny cabin for three days.

“Mentally, it takes you well beyond a point you never thought you would reach and you have to just get on with it and finish what you started.”

The team aims to raise more than £100,000 for The Brooke, Right To Play and Hilton in the Community Foundation through the challenge.

Mr Glasson added: “It’s a tough time of year to be taking on such a brutal challenge and to be away from loved ones, although as professional polo players we are also quite used to being away from home at this time of year playing overseas.”

The Atlantic Polo Team will be nearing the halfway mark of the challenge across the Atlantic Ocean in the next five days. To donate, log on to www.atlanticpoloteam. com


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