A MARINE from Clayton-le-Moors and his crew broke a world record for rowing an ocean when they arrived in Barbados on Saturday night.
Royal Marine Commando Matthew Mason, 24, was one of seven men to row 2,598 miles across the Atlantic from Gran Canaria to Barbados.
The team had hoped to break the World Atlantic Ocean Rowing Speed Record of 32 days by completing it in fewer than 30 days.
Despite missing out on that record by 22 hours, Mr Mason said they had broken the record for the fastest crew of their size.
Speaking to the Lancashire Telegraph from Barbados, Mr Mason said: “I am absolutely shattered and I have still got wobbly sea legs.
“I am just glad to be back on dry land – I think we all are really.
“It was a lot of hard graft.”
Throughout the gruelling 33-day journey, which began on February 11, Mr Mason and his crewmates took turns to row for two hours at a time.
The former St Mary’s College student said: “In the first week there was quite a big storm and we had huge swells coming over the boat.
“If you went overboard during that you would have been lost at seas and dead.
“It was pretty epic, but at the same time it was exhilarating.
“For the last three days we were all aching badly and I have quite a bad back.
“You also get rowers claw because of gripping to the oars for two hours at a time.
“But I don’t regret any of it. It is something only a few people have done before me.
“I am in that club now. It was hard work but I am an ocean rower.”
Mr Mason and the rest of his crew were yesterday relaxing in Barbados ahead of setting off back to the UK today.
Mr Mason, who took on the challenge to raise money for The Royal Marines Charitable Trust Fund, has so far raised more than £6,250 of his £20,000 target.
Sponsorships can still be made by visiting www.just giving.com/mattmason12