All Systems Row

A SINGLE PURPOSE

5 Women

2,000 Miles

35 Days

1 Boat

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Map
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ANDREA
HARWOOD

NUTRITION
PLANNING

Andrea worked as a ski-guide in the Alps and then moved to Africa where she managed teams in the aid and development sector. She is now a Social Worker supporting children seeking asylum in the UK. Andrea has an MSc in Development Management and a Masters in Social Work. She has completed six ultramarathons and this year she is running the entire length of the Lake District in a day.

EXPERIENCE: 5 years
AGE: 52
FROM: Bexhill
CLUB: Bexhill Rowing Club

CHARLIE
COOPER

KIT AND
TRAINING LEAD

Charlie from East Sussex graduated from the University of Plymouth in 2020. She recently moved to Portsmouth to start her career as an NHS Physiotherapist. Charlie started rowing when she was 11 and competed in several indoor rowing competitions where she was invited to join Bexhill Rowing Club. In her first year at university, Charlie won the Women’s Eights ‘Head of the River’ Race.

EXPERIENCE: 8 years
AGE: 22
FROM: Portsmouth
CLUB: Bexhill Rowing Club

STEPH
TOOGOOD

FIRST MATE

Steph is from Massachusetts, USA where she first rowed at University on the Charles River about 34 years ago. She works as a NeuroPhysio with acquired brain injury survivors. Steph rediscovered rowing 4 years ago, but this time on the sea and she is thrilled about taking on this challenge alongside five strong women around the challenging British coast.

EXPERIENCE: 5 years
AGE: 52
FROM: Bexhill
CLUB: Bexhill Rowing Club

JESS
PLAIL

SKIPPER

Jess went to Exeter University to study Sport and Exercise Science and now works in the Orthopaedics department at Tunbridge Wells Hospital. Her proudest achievements have been winning the gold medal in the ladies open pair at the British Rowing Offshore Championships and Beach Sprints in 2019 and in the same year winning the Ladies Senior Open at the CARA South Coast Championships in Dartmouth.

EXPERIENCE: 8 years
AGE: 33
FROM: Tunbridge Wells
CLUB: Bexhill Rowing Club

LIA
EVANS

MEDIA
MANAGER

After graduating, Lia became a professional physiotherapist and followed this calling to become a respiratory physiotherapist on intensive care during the Covid-19 pandemic. Lia recently raised £1500 for good causes by undertaking the Three Peaks Challenge. She is passionate about conservation and spent her university summer volunteering aboard a sea vessel and teaching in Madagascar.

EXPERIENCE: 2 years
AGE: 22
FROM: Bexhill
CLUB: Bexhill Rowing Club

FIONA
JAMIE

KIT AND
EQUIPMENT

Fiona studied Industrial Engineering at University, gained an MBA and now works as a Sports Massage Therapist . She’s been rowing for 35 years and has competed in many triathlons including the demanding World and European age group championships. Fiona set the British record for indoor rowing for the marathon distance (42,195m) for her age group and went on to beat her own record.

EXPERIENCE: 4 years
AGE: 62
FROM: Brighton
CLUB: Shoreham Rowing Club

Research Programme

University of Portsmouth

eDNA

Environmental DNA analysis, using ‘metabarcoding’ i.e. comparison with existing DNA databases. Asmetabarcoding is optimized, it is becoming an essential tool for ecological monitoring and global conservation study. The University of Portsmouth is keen to measure a number of environmental parameters from the GB Row Challenge boats that can be correlated with each other and integrated into an overarching analysis spanning several years and eDNA analysis fits these requirements perfectly. eDNA is well suited for citizen science applications as the quality and consistency of the data is high, whilst the actual sampling is not time-consuming, nor the storage conditions difficult. The ‘off shift’ rower in each boat can collect one sample a day, directly pumping seawater through a special filter, without disrupting boat operations. The proposed assays will initially be (i) fish and (ii) marine mammals, including whales and dolphins. Findings will be made available to the Dolphin Conservation and Whale Conservation Societies.

Microplastics

Microplastics are fragments of any type of plastic less than 5mm in length. They cause pollutionn byentering natural ecosystems from a variety of sources, including cosmetics, clothing and industrial processes. Two classifications of microplastics are currently recognised: primary microplastics that are already 5mm or less before entering the environment and secondary microplastics which arise from the degradation of larger plastic products through natural weathering processes after entering the environment. There is currently no complete map for the UK concentrations of microplastics in its surrounding waters. The GB Row Challenge boats will collect data by running a water collection pump for a defined period of time each day.

The microplastics trapped by the filter will depend upon the pore size specified. Initial count data will become vailable approximately two weeks after the filters have arrived at the laboratory, with further analysis then being undertaken to identify polymer types and investigate correlation with temperature and salinity data.

Airborne Microplastics

Microplastics that sit in the top layer of the water become airborne due to wave action. There are several other ways that microplastics can enter the atmosphere - in large cities through wind - and in farms through soil dust during agricultural processes. There is currently little information regarding the concentratio of airborne microplastics and their effects on human health, the marine environment and global climate change. GB Row Challenge is exploring ways in which sample data can be collected for the first time during the event and the framework within which this data will then be analysed.

Noise, Temperature, Salinity and Pollution

A hydrophone and other instrumentation built into the rudder of GB Row Challenge boats will capture further data throughout the event. Analysis of the noise pollution data will include the development of algorithms to remove the sounds of the oars and the wind. From this a heat map of sound and underwater noise pollution can be generated for the area surrounding the route of the boat. This real sound data will help to validate much of the modelled data contained in existing studies e.g. the sound maps that have been produced by Cefas. Data on temperature, salinity and pollution (either microbial or hydrocarbon) will be invaluable in establishing correlation and trends

We're supporting

Renewable World

The team are supporting ‘Renewable World’ who support the provision of affordable renewable energy services to improve income, health and education across a variety of challenging social and geographical settings. In doing so, they help mitigate the effects of climate change. Since their establishment in 2008, they are on track to meet their goal of increasing access to clean, affordable and sustainable energy to tackle poverty for 100,000 people by 2022.
‘Renewable World’ has supported over 40,000 people with renewable energy technologies and services including over 3,420 households and 222 institutions, small businesses and smallholders across 84 communities. They have well established and successful community initiatives across South Asia and East Africa. ‘All Systems Row’ are proud to support ‘Renewable World’ through their participation in the ‘GB Row Challenge 2022’.