Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Adventurer Omar Samra and Professional Triathlete Omar Nour Gear Up for the World’s Toughest Row

Omar Samra & Omar Nour to Defy the Atlantic in Pursuit of a
New Achievement

Cairo, 2 May 2017 - Egyptian Adventurer Omar Samra and professional Egyptian triathlete Omar Nour will take on one of the world’s toughest adventures - rowing 5,000 nautical kilometers from the Canary Islands to Antigua, unsupported, as part of the Atlantic Challenge. The team will depart from the Canary Islands on 12 December 2017.

Commenting on the new challenge, Omar Samra said: "The idea of completing a human-powered ocean-crossing always intrigued me, but I knew that this was one perilous adventure I couldn’t do alone. I immediately started looking for a team mate – it takes a certain kind of person to keep going when faced with 50-foot waves, blisters, salt rash, sharks and sleep deprivation. When an injury side-lined Omar Nour from the Rio 2016 Olympics, I knew I’d found my man."

"Our personalities are worlds apart – his contagious energy and winning attitude complements my calm demeanor and ability to deal with high pressure situations. Together, we make a formidable team," Samra added.

"While Omar Samra and I are accomplished in mountaineering and triathlon, it comes to rowing an ocean, we’re starting from scratch - we have absolutely no knowledge of the ocean, and had never been in a rowing boat until just a short month ago! It’s refreshing to try something completely new – to test the limit of our physical and mental strength and to achieve something unthinkable. We want to defy our limits, and inspire the world to do the same!” Omar Nour added.

Together the two Omar’s are dubbed O2. Once they leave the safety of the harbor, no outside assistance is permitted throughout the crossing. They’ll be alone, completely unsupported in the vast ocean and at the mercy of the environment.

In addition to undergoing high intensity physical training to morph their bodies into that of elite rowers, the duo will need to undergo sufficient mental training together to be able to handle any situation the elements throw at them. The duo will also have to complete multiple qualifications prior to the race start including a RYA Yacht-master Ocean Theory, First Aid at Sea, Sea Survival and a VHF Radio License.

If they successfully complete the crossing, they will be the first Arab team to row across an ocean. The world record for pairs, which O2 have set firmly in their sights, is 40 days, 4 hours and 3 minutes. 

 The first successful Atlantic Ocean crossing was completed by Sir Chay Blyth and John Ridgeway in 1966. It was a 92-day battle against hurricanes, 50-foot waves and near starvation. Thankfully for Samra and Nour, boats have advanced a lot since that inaugural crossing. O2’s vessel is approximately 7.5 meters long and 1.8 meters wide, and is built of wood, fiberglass, carbon fiber and Kevlar.

It will be capable of converting seawater into drinking water and have solar panels to power the GPS and other vital electrical equipment. The team will have 90 days’ worth of food rations stored in the small cabin, along with first-aid kits, tracking beacons and communications devices.

O2’s Atlantic adventure will launch on 12 December 2017.

About Omar Samra
Omar Samra is an adventurer, motivational speaker, future astronaut, and U.N. goodwill ambassador. Samra was the first Egyptian to climb Everest, the 7 Summits and ski to both the North and South Pole.

About Omar Nour
Omar Nour is the first Egyptian professional triathlete in history, representing Egypt on the Olympic triathlon circuit

At age 29, he weighed in at 105 kg and turned his life around by signing up for this first ever triathlon. Two short years later, Nour earned his pro-card and started his professional triathlon career at age 31.

In addition to his triathlon career, Nour has successfully launched his own brand “o.n.” which is synonymous to healthy living and lifestyle, and is an active motivational speaker. He is also an avid entrepreneur having started numerous companies with his younger brother. 

The Atlantic Challenge, dubbed ‘the world’s toughest row’ is an annual rowing race which takes its participants more than 5,000km west from San Sebastian in La Gomera, Canary Islands to Nelson’s Dockyard English Harbour in Antigua. The race begins in early December and welcomes a small group of brave teams, made up of 1, 2, 3 or 4 rowers. The recently completed 2016 race welcomed 12 teams from 6 countries around the world –11 teams successfully reached Antigua. The 2017 race will start on 12 December 2017.