A CHARD man’s monumental Atlantic Ocean challenge is complete after a gruelling 50 days and 19 minutes at sea.

The team of four, featuring former Chard rugby player Richard ‘Tiny’ Baker, set sail on December 12 from the Canary Islands, just off the west coast of Africa.

Tiny’s team, the Atlantic Mavericks, were taking part in the epic Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge, billed as the ‘world’s toughest row’.

And the group, which also consists of Ian Davies, Roy Dixon and Ian Duncan, faced instant problems.

“It was a hard start as our dagger board broke in 30 foot waves on the first night, and a rope wrapped around the rudder put us a day behind,” said Tiny.

“We got into the routine of doing two hours on, two hours off, of rowing and trying to eat sleep and maintain the boat.

“After a couple of days could not see other boats, and when nothing can be seen in each direction to the horizon you realise what a huge undertaking this was.”

It was 49 days before the four saw land again, and as the clock ticked over into day 50 they were welcomed with cheers, blaring boat horns, flares and fireworks into Nelson’s Dockyard English Harbour, Antigua and Barbuda.

After the 3,000 mile row, Tiny said: “Stepping ashore was an experience after 50 days at sea. I’m still wobbly now.

“I have to say thank you to Atom Fabs, Chard RFC, Doncasters, Numatic international, Tesco and Phoenix Fitness for their support to my challenge.”