MEMBERS Newport Rowing Club are using the enforced lockdown period to do something positive for Isle of Wight charity Mountbatten — as well as stay ready for a return to competitive action — by rowing 4,700km on dry land.

Twenty club members and friends, including members of Shanklin Sandown Rowing Club, have taken on the Row the Atlantic 2020 challenge — the aim being to row the equivalent distance of the famous Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, run annually from the Canaries to Antigua.

Rowers are doing it from home on rowing machines while the club is largely closed due to the Covid-19 lockdown.

Isle of Wight County Press: Suzanne Whitehouse, the club’s leading distance rower so far, having clocked up more than 77,000m.Suzanne Whitehouse, the club’s leading distance rower so far, having clocked up more than 77,000m.

They aim to row over 100km a day, with the goal of hitting their 4,700km target by the end of the month and as much sponsorship and donations as possible.

So far, they have reached more than 1,300km, with some aiming to do marathon equivalents in the coming weeks.

Club chairman, Kev Bennett, said: “We wanted to find a way of joining together as a club while we are unable to get out and compete on the water.

“It also gives us a chance to raise money for Mountbatten, which does so much good work across the Isle of Wight.”

The fundraiser is the brainchild of new member, Julie Clark, of Whitwell, who added: “With the need to stay fit for some winter rowing and that Mountbatten, like so may other charities, are struggling, there was no downside to this, so we thought we’d give it a go.

Check out how the team are doing via, from where you can also donate to Mountbatten.