Meet Andy Burns, he’s logged over 100,000 nautical miles, skippered in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, worked for the RNLI and competed in six Superyacht Regattas! Its impressive, at 31 years of age having crossed the globe in such exhilarating fashion.
At home Andy is an avid sportsman, he has taken part in both full and half ironman races, along with a number of marathons. He has an undeniable love for windsurfing, kite surfing, surfing and many other sports.
But we all know adventure is a state of mind, and to an active soul the draw of a new challenge never loses its appeal. So, what new and extraordinary type of challenge could Andy find next?
The UK’s first Offshore Rowing Race Series!
We are delighted to announce that Andy is bringing his ocean experience to Shoreseeker and joining the UK Race Series team.
The UK Race Series is divided into 6 legs, with each leg lasting one week, teams of 5, plus a professional skipper will need to keep their boats moving 24/7 and adjust to an eat, sleep and row routine of two hours on, two hours off.
The race starts from Portsmouth UK, crosses the English Channel to Le Havre, France. Then proceeds to Guernsey, onto the Isles of Scilly, from there to Plymouth UK, onto Weymouth and back to Portsmouth.
Only 150 race places will be available, and Shoreseeker have launched a campaign to find out how many people are interested and available to take part in June/July 2018.
We caught up with Andy to find why he’s so excited about Shoreseeker’s UK Race Series!
Andy, thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us, you have a wealth of ocean sport experience, what is it about being out on the open water that makes you go back for more?
Being out on the water is something I have done and been completely at home with since the age of 11. It’s just you and mother nature out there and puts the unimportant worries in life into perspective. I also relish the mental and physical challenges being at sea presents.
How will the UK Race Series be different from anything you’ve done before?
I myself was new to ocean rowing until I joined Shoreseeker, so the challenge is already different, but it will be a nice addition to the other water sports I enjoy and ocean/offshore experience I have. Being at sea is already physical but the Shoreseeker UK Race Series offers an extra element of physical.
After a tough selection process, you were chosen to skipper and represent the GREAT Campaign in the Clipper Round the World Race. You then sailed over 25,000 miles with Clipper and achieved 2 podium finishes. As a highly experienced seafarer, with multiple qualifications; MCA Master 3000grt and RYA Yacht Master Instructor to name a couple, what skills to you look forward to bringing to Shoreseeker?
With Clipper Round the World Race I led, developed and coached a novice crew, through four legs of the Ocean crossing race. I love teaching and have the ability to pass on my passions to others, while building productive, hardworking and happy teams.
The UK Race Series is open to anyone who loves a challenge, Shoreseeker specialise in Offshore Rowing for people with no previous rowing experience.
Throughout the challenge we build confident crews, with qualified and experienced skippers onboard each boat, this really encourages participants to pull together and work as a team.
Given the fact the UK Race Series will be a whole new concept for most people, what is it excites you most about the UK Race Series?
The idea of rowing stretches of water I have sailed with an energetic enthusiastic team who want to achieve the same goal. The fact that the race series takes place during the British summer is absolutely perfect and it will highlight how beautiful some of the stopovers are. I have experienced Guernsey and the Scilly Isles in the summer and they are mind-blowingly beautiful.
You have experienced some extreme ocean challenges around the globe, when things get tough and you are tired, where do you find the strength to keep giving your best?
Anything that is hard in life comes with a reward. I remember the rewards to continue pushing on. I also remember how lucky I am to be in a position where I am able to experience these Ocean challenges. There are a high percentage of people in the UK who haven’t even been to sea before.
So, in your experience what are some of the best reasons people should take on an open water challenge?
A massive push out of your comfort zone, new friendships, a sense of achievement, travel and being part of a club very few are part of.
After you have pushed your boundaries and shared these amazing and unique experiences, what does the sense of achievement feel like?
The sense of achievement is huge, emotional, overwhelming and very difficult to describe but one thing is for sure it just leaves you wanting more!
Thank you so much for chatting with us Andy, before we go, what advice would you give to others who are thinking about doing the Shoreseeker UK Race Series?
I would say take that week out of your summer to experience and take part in something different. It is hard to find challenges like this open to everyone. I also think physical preparation is key and it’s always good to have something to work towards in the gym.
If you are inspired to find out more about the UK Adventure Rowing Race Series click here. You can also watch our short film on Offshore Rowing and hear some of Shoreseeker’s previous competitors talk about their race.