RWinvest have been sponsoring Kiko Matthews over the past 49 days in her world record attempt to become the quickest woman to complete a solo transatlantic row, and we are thrilled to announce that she has done it!

Kiko has surpassed all previous women rowers who have attempted the Atlantic challenge by a whopping 7 days. This is an incredible achievement for a lady who was in hospital just 8 months ago receiving treatment for a recurring brain tumour.

Having been completely by herself at sea for nearly two months, Kiko kept a diary of her day-today encounters out in the Atlantic ocean including some of the toughest weather conditions, steepest waves, most dangerous sharks and painful blisters. When questioned about the difficulties she faced, Kiko’s braveness and willpower was evidently down to those supporting her:

‘I didn’t get scared by the adverse conditions, I just got on with things. What can you do about it? You have no choice but to carry on, like in life. It was temporary relentlessness. If I did ever get down, I thought of the people willing me on, I wanted to do it for them. The stories they sent me supported me incredibly. By the last two weeks, I was just totally content and at peace; I didn’t even listen to music.’

A 3000-mile voyage that began in Gran Canaria and concluded late last night in Barbados, is similar in intensity to the likes of the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge that sees teams row from the Canary Island La Gomera to Barbuda in the Caribbean. However, Kiko was entirely alone for the duration of her expedition, requiring an admirable level of both physical and mental strength that sets her apart from any other Atlantic rowing events.

The reason behind her Atlantic rowing quest is to raise money for an intensive care unit in King’s College Hospital, where outstanding staff saved her life and cared for her in the wake of her recovery from a deadly brain tumour.

kiko matthews

On top of this, Kiko also suffers from Cushing’s, a persistent disease that previously left her unable to climb the stairs. The thought that eight months ago I was lying in hospital having my brain operated on and now I am here having rowed the Atlantic, I guess I am a bit proud. I have shown that anyone can attempt anything given the right attitude, belief, and support. I want to use my story to inspire women to challenge themselves.’

Kiko also aims to empower women across the world by showing them that anything is possible. She says ‘I want to use my story to inspire women to challenge themselves’.

Kiko not only now joins 6 of the other fastest women to row across the Atlantic, but achieves world record breaking status for the fastest Atlantic crossing ever completed by a single female. Originally believing that she had accomplished the row in 50 days, Kiko got an additional surprise in hearing that she actually did it in an official time of 49 days, 8 hours and 13 minutes.

RWinvest are bursting with pride to be sponsoring Kiko and are even more elated that she has achieved her end goal. She is an inspiration for rowers, women and just about anyone out there who has suffered from a debilitating illness and we are sure that she will encourage many to get out and row the Atlantic for themselves!

To read Kiko’s full story and to donate, please click here.

Written by Laura Howard 23rd March 2018

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