Category Archives: The Outward Bound Trust

THEY DID IT!

Go Ape Three Peaks

It’s official, our Go Ape team has conquered the Three Peaks Yacht Race!

After setting sail last Saturday (11th June) the team has been battling their way against their fellow competitors, the elements and shall we say, a few technical troubles…all to cross the finish line at 6:30am this morning.

The monumental journey encompassed 389 miles of sailing, 72 miles of running and 18 miles of cycling and took our tremendous tribe approx. four days and 16 hours to complete.

We’re amazingly proud of Jerome Mayhew, Paul Love-Williams and Tris Mayhew for successfully sailing 62 sea miles from Barmouth to Caernarfon, 100 sea miles from Caernarfon to Whitehaven and a further staggering 227 sea miles from Whitehaven to Fort William – as well a few stops in between.

Not stopping at a broken impeller drive the crew also had to get creative once again after the yacht exhaust melted before coming into Whitehaven.

The kindness of strangers at the port meant the crew could continue after ‘borrowing’ some flexible piping. By cutting off the melted in/out section of piping and ingeniously gaffer-taping new sections together, coupled with a bit of lubrication from some washing up liquid the team was ready to set of again in search of adventure (and the next team to beat).

Coming out of Whitehaven the team made great progress hurling along against the current for four hours straight. On four occasions the rudder lost its grip keeping the crew on their toes. Yet, against the unseasonably brisk June winds, the yacht averaged around 14 knots, a solid speed for a 30ft boat!

Let’s not forget the other heroes from one of the UK’s toughest endurance races, the devoted runners, Ed Smith and Mick Rimmer.

We have been in awe of their perseverance as they’ve charged up the three highest peaks in Wales, England and Scotland. The stalwart runners not only had to experience hours upon hours of rumbling around in the cabin whilst at sea (an encounter I’m told that is much like spinning around in a washing machine!), they also had to adapt to ever-changing timescales, which meant running through the night…

Arriving at the final peak, Ben Nevis, at around midnight Ed and Mick ran through the early hours to cross the finish line at 6:30am, much to the joy of the team and everyone at Go Ape. Combining the distance of Mt. Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis their running efforts equated to running three marathons in as many days across some of the trickiest terrain the UK has to offer.

Now we patiently wait for the Three Peaks Yacht Race to officially announce the positions for the finalists. A superb achievement by a team that truly eats, sleeps and breathes the Go Ape way of life.

Go Ape Cross the Finish Line

After speaking with a, quite rightfully, elated Jerome Mayhew, here’s a few words from the Skipper himself:

It was an intense, amazing experience – we just had to keep going! Our competitors were world-class and whilst we’re a fairly novice team in comparison we couldn’t be more delighted with the result. Some moments were incredibly challenging but when things go wrong you just have to turn I can’t into I can, and that’s what we did.

On asking whether Jerome would do it all again:

Without a shadow of a doubt.

Of course the team were racing for more than just the challenge, they were racing to help raise money for the Outward Bound Trust.

Your support will help change the life of a young person from a disadvantaged background. For every £200 raised, another young person is able to experience the challenge of an Outward Bound course. To find out more about the trust, visit https://www.outwardbound.org.uk/.

Please donate to support the tribe as they embark on one of toughest adventure races, just head to our Virgin Money Giving page.

We’ll be keeping the blog updated with first-hand tales from the race, including how they coped with 37.9 knot gales! Perhaps we’ll give them the weekend to recover first…

Against the odds…reaching the TOP TEN!

Go Ape Crew View

The finish line is well and truly nigh for our Three Peaks Yacht Race team, who have successfully sailed, cycled and run their way into the top ten in the final leg of the race!

It’s been a challenging week for the Go Ape team who have embodied the very essence of living life adventurously as they’ve made their way north from Barmouth. Demanding weather coupled with engine trouble delayed their journey and led to some very lateral thinking from the team.

Do you know what a broken impeller drive is? No, neither did we, that was until we saw the damage one can cause to an engine! Check out the photo below:

Go Ape Broken Engine Three Peaks Yacht Race

In our leafy world lashings of rope and wire is usually the answer, but the crew had to get a little more ‘technical’…

Fear not, since fixing the engine the team has made a triumphant leap from 12th place to battling it out with some of the UK’s finest endurance race teams within the top ten. With the highest peaks of Wales and England conquered, their journey up the West Coast continues towards Corpach, where the mighty summit of Ben Nevis awaits them.

Go Ape Position in Three Peaks Yacht Race

We’ll be bringing you live updates via Twitter and Facebook – keep following @GoApeTribe for the latest news. Or you can keep an eye on the teams progress via the Three Peaks Yacht Race website here.

The Three Peaks Yacht Race isn’t just for endurance race kudos, the Go Ape team are racing to raise money for a great cause – the Outward Bound Trust.

For every £200 raised, another young person from a disadvantaged background is able to experience the challenge of an Outward Bound course with potentially life changing results. To find out more about the trust, visit https://www.outwardbound.org.uk/.

Please donate to support the tribe as they embark on one of toughest adventure races, just head to our Virgin Money Giving page.

Meet Britain’s Best Sailors

Three Peaks Yacht Race

As you may have heard, five (bold/crazy) members of the Go Ape tribe have signed-up to take part in one of the world’s oldest, longest and toughest endurance races: the Three Peaks Yacht Race (#3PYR).

Collectively, the team will run 72 miles, cycle 18 miles, and sail a jaw-dropping 389 miles up the notoriously wet ‘n’ wild west coast. That’s some serious sea miles – but thankfully, team Go Ape has some highly-experienced sailors in its midst, who are ready to (quite literally) take the helm and sail the team to success! That is, if they’re able to control their seasickness when things get a little choppy…

In aid of #3PYR, we’re taking a look at some of Britain’s best boatmen and women. Sailors who have achieved things many of us can only dream of, and who are inspiring Jerome, Tris, Mike, Ed and Paul to train hard so they can get out there and show the land and sea who’s boss!

Dame Ellen MacArthur

Dame Ellen MacArthur shot to international sailing fame back in 2005 when she broke the world record for the fastest solo circumnavigation of the globe, which she completed in 71 days, 14 hours, 18 minutes and 33 seconds. Sailing alone, Ellen had to be on constant lookout and never had more than 20 minutes of sleep at any one time. That’s dedication.

Now retired from professional sailing, Dame Ellen dedicates her time to her two charities: the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust and Ellen MacArthur Foundation, which is focused on inspiring our generation to re-think, re-design and build a positive future circular economy.

Sir Ben Ainslie

It would be criminal not to give mention to Sir Ben Ainslie, aka, the most successful sailor in Olympic history. Sir Ben won four gold medals at four consecutive Olympic Games, and is the first person to bag five medals from five different sailing events.

Sir Ben started sailing at the ripe of eight, competing in his first race two years later and finishing in 73rd place. His next challenge – which he’s dubbed his ‘ultimate challenge’ – is to bring the America’s Cup back to Britain for the first time in around 165 years. He will head a team of some of the best British and international sailors in hope of winning the prestigious trophy.

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston

In 1969, English sailor Sir Robin Knox-Johnston became the first person to perform a single-handed, non-stop circumnavigation of the globe. And while most people are retired and ‘winding down’ aged 67, Sir Robin had other plans, sailing into the record books as the oldest yachtsman to compete (yet another) solo round-the-world trip in the VELUX 5 Oceans Race. Go Sir Robin!

John Merricks

John Merricks represented our country at Atlanta’s 1996 Summer Olympics, winning a silver medal in the 470 class with his teammate, Ian Walker. Sadly, Merrick died in a car accident in Italy in 1997, but his legacy lives on through the John Merricks Sailing Trust, of which Sir Ben Ainslie is the first patron. Over 16 years, more than £335,000 has been raised to help young sailors and youth sailing organisations achieve their goals.

Sarah Ayton

Sarah Ayton OBE has won two gold medals for sailing; the first during the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens and second during the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. But, she’s not going to stop there: Sarah’s ambition is to add to her medal collection, and will be hoping her lucky red socks will help her do just that!

Think we’ve missed anyone out? Who would make your list of Britain’s best sailors?

Meet our Three Peaks Yacht Race team…

Ben Nevis - 3PYR

It takes a certain type of person to compete in the 3PYR – and we found five of them in the Go Ape tribe!

389 miles of sailing. 72 miles of running. 18 miles of cycling. The Three Peaks Yachts Race (3PYR) is one of the oldest, longest and toughest multi-sport endurance races in the world. Held once a year, it sees competitors battling the elements as they race up the UK’s coast, starting from Barmouth and finishing in Fort William.

Call them what you will (mad, crazy, bonkers), our fantastic five have been mega dedicated in the run up to the race and are (almost) ready to get out there, represent the Go Ape tribe and do us proud!

So without further ado, it’s time for some introductions…

Jerome Mayhew (Managing Director) Role: Sailor/skipper

Spending time in the open water is nothing new to Jerome, who grew up sailing dinghies. He moved on to bigger boats during his twenties, when he competed in offshore racing with the Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC). Jerome took a break from boating to have kids but now they’re older, he’s a helmsman once more and has bought Nimrod as a family boat.

Jerome Mayhew - Go Ape

The 3PYR has been on Jerome’s bucket list for a long time and will be his first offshore race for 20 years. He’s hoping sea-sickness doesn’t get the better of him…

Tris Mayhew (Chief Gorilla) Role: Sailor/ replacement runner

For Tris, Chief Gorilla, the 3PYR is the perfect race as it falls in line with Go Ape’s brand values: it encourages people to get out there, challenge themselves and live life adventurously! Nevertheless, Tris admits that he first turned down the offer of joining the team, and it took a good two weeks for Jerome to convince him to take part!

Tris Mayhew - Go Ape

In preparation for the race, Tris has been running 5 days (45 miles) a week since the start of the year, which has had the added benefit of trimming his waistline! He said that training has proved a real personal challenge and he’s found it tough juggling other commitments. Yet, he says that he’s enjoying ‘skilling up’ and is keen to master powerful spinnakers which scare him.

Tris tells us: “By the end of this at least I’ll know whether I like or loathe offshore sailing, so that I can either start planning to sail across the Pacific or strike it from my bucket list.”

Mike Rimmer (Site Manager at Crathes) Role: Runner

Hard work and dedication are two things Mike knows a lot about after a 31-year career working as an Aircraft Engineer for the Royal Air Force.

Mick Rimmer - Go Ape

Mike’s got an impressive running résumé, having competed in numerous marathon and ultra-running events such as Marathon des Sables (crossing the Sahara desert) and the Everest Marathon (the highest marathon in the world). He believes the 3PYR will be a great event to mark his 50th year!

Ed Smith (Construction Manager) Role: Runner

A keen runner and cyclist, Ed says that working for Go Ape has allowed him to test out some of the UK’s most beautiful trails. He never travels to a site without packing his bike and trainers in the van with him!

Ed Smith - Go Ape

Ed has recently started competing in triathlons and took part in his first half Ironman last September. He’s already competed in yacht racing with other member of the team, racing across the English Channel and around the Isle of Wight. He says that he’s eager to learn the ropes and help his team succeed. “It’s a true test of endurance and there’s no escaping the elements. Once it starts, there’s no resting ‘til Fort William!”

Paul Love-Williams (Head of Construction) Role: Sailing

Paul’s love for sailing was re-kindled back in 2012 when the Go Ape tribe went yacht racing in Port Solent to celebrate the company’s 10th birthday. Now, Paul is a regular offshore racer: he’s an active sailing member with Junior Offshore Group (JOG) and RORC, and has successfully completed two Rolex Fastnet races, one Rolex Sydney race and two RORC Caribbean 600 races. His favourite race to date is the Volvo Round Ireland Yacht Race.

Paul Love-Williams - Go Ape

Paul’s a strong all-round sailor and will be keeping a close eye on navigation and tactics during the race. Commenting on the 3PYR he says: “It’s been on my list for a few years now. The sailing is very challenging and the unique mix of running, cycling and rowing should make it a superb race!”

The Go Ape team will be racing to raise money to help support the Outward Bound Trust. For every £200 raised, another young person from a disadvantaged background is able to experience the challenge of an Outward Bound course with potentially life changing results. To find out more about the trust, visit https://www.outwardbound.org.uk/.

If you want to donate to this fantastic cause and support our endurance racers, head to our Virgin Money Giving page.

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