Fresh Dental Challenge Completed!

Fresh Dental Challenge

Have you heard of the Fresh Dental Challenge?

In December two men geared up for their adventure. A 51-day journey across the Atlantic, which you can only complete in… a rowing boat. That’s the Fresh Dental Challenge.

Fresh Dental Challenge

Or more accurately, that’s the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. Aptly named ‘the worlds toughest row’, this challenge requires its contestants to row across the Atlantic Ocean in a rowboat. The Fresh Dental Challenge came about when two dentists from Fresh Dental Healthcare, in Dartmouth, decided to take part.

Justin Marney and Azud Irshad began their 3000-mile challenge on the 14th of December.

Departing from La Gomera in the Canary Islands, along with 11 other teams, Fresh Dental Challenge rowed off into the Atlantic. Justin is married with 3 children and qualified as dentist from Manchester University. He has walked the 270-mile Pennine Way at 16 and he has continued to challenge himself for over 30 years regularly taking part in endurance events. We imagine this was his biggest challenge yet. Azud is keen on physical fitness. He trains in the gym and runs every day, and his diet remains clean and disciplined all year round. Though he hasn’t taken part in an event like this one before, it’s clear that he was meant for it!

Fresh Dental Challenge
Photo credit: Ben Duffy

Justin and Azud were raising money with their Fresh Dental Challenge for Rowcroft Hospice. Rowcroft Hospice is a specialist caring facility in Torquay. Their team of doctors, nurses, social workers and a range of other health and social care professionals provide specialist care in our Inpatient Unit. They also care for out-patients and their loved ones, offering therapies, bereavement support and medical consultation in an environment that helps patients and families make the most of precious time together. With their much-needed services costing £8.3 Million last year, Justin and Azud’s contribution will be much appreciated.

As you can imagine 51 days out in open ocean can be tough.

Fresh Dental Challenge
Photo credit: Ben Duffy

Through hunger, massive waves, shark encounters and whale watching. Through freeze dried food, toothache, near misses with gigantic boats and ‘biblical rain’. Justin and Azud managed to complete the challenge they set themselves. They even managed to update everyone with stories along the way! You can look back on their blog entries on the Fresh Dental Challenge website. They were away from their families over the festive period and shared a tiny damp cabin. However, it was all worth it.

A target donation amount is set at £10,000. They surpassed their target by over a thousand pounds, raising £11,390!

They arrived in the English Harbour in Antigua on the 3rd of February with full beards and flares, celebrating their defeat of the challenge. Speaking on the challenge, Azud said:

“Having completed my biggest physical and mental challenge thus far, I feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of this achievement. I’m still reflecting on all of the situations we encountered.”
 
“By far the best feeling was crossing the finish line, but on the Atlantic, jumping off the boat half way through for a swimming lesson was equally terrifying and exciting.”
 
“There’s nothing that I would consider a bad experience throughout the challenge but the toughest thing to do was slow down to coordinate with the arrival of our families. But that lead to a truly incredible scene when we made land fall.”
 
“I am most looking forward to catching up with my family and friends. Also looking forward to carrying this momentum forward and pursue different challenges and projects”.

Well done to Justin and Azud!

Fresh Dental Challenge
Photo credit: Ben Duffy

You can still donate to Rowcroft Hospice, should you wish to. Do you think you’d row the Atlantic? Have you ever completed a challenge for charity? We’d love to know about it! Let us know in the comments.

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