Ian Rivers’ Row Sentinel Challenge

One man rowing a small boat 3100 miles across the Atlantic with only the stars to guide him home

In May, former SAS soldier Ian Rivers will leave New York and row the 3100 plus nautical miles to the Isles of Scilly.

Ian will be unsupported and will be using only the sun, the stars and a sextant to guide him.  He will not have access to GPS.

This crossing will test human endurance, navigation and seamanship to the absolute limit.

Nobody has ever managed to complete an unsupported solo row of the Atlantic using the Northern Route.

He will be rowing for between 9 and 12 hours per day and estimates that the crossing will take him between 60 and 90 days.

Ian, 55 from Hereford, has led a life of adventure.  He joined the army after becoming inspired by the Falklands War. He fought in theatres across the world and was a member of 22 Special Air Service regiment for more than a decade.  

In December 2012, whilst working for an American news network, he was kidnapped in Syria.  He escaped his captors and managed to find his way to safety using only natural indicators.

Ian, who’s just become a grandfather, is a qualified mountain guide and was part of the British Army West Ridge Everest challenge in 2005.

He is a qualified ocean yacht master and has represented Britain in the age group European and World championships.

“I’d describe myself as an adventurer,” he said.  “I’ve always been drawn to the ocean, ever since I was a kid. It frees you up. I’ve wanted to attempt this challenge since I was in my 20s.”

“I’m looking forward to the calmness, the equilibrium of being alone for a long time.  If I’m honest, I don’t really like my own company so it’s the ultimate challenge for me to be on my own for that long.”

Ian is raising money for two charities; the SAS Regimental Association’s Sentinels programme and St Michael’s Hospice in Herefordshire.  He is aiming to raise more than half a million pounds for the charities.

The Row Sentinel Atlantic crossing has only been possible thanks to the support Ian has received from his sponsors. His platinum sponsors Grenade are the market-leading sports performance and active nutrition brand.  The Spectra Group is a leading global provider of Cyber Services and Satellite communication, Hexegic are leading cyber security consultants and Valbruna is a leader in the production of rustproof construction steel and metal alloys.

For more information please contact [email protected] or phone 07966 546068

Ian is available for interviews until May 10th 

Further information:

The route

Nobody has ever managed to complete an unsupported solo row of the Atlantic using the Northern Route.

Ian will not have the support of the trade winds used for other Atlantic crossings. He expects to face a tropical storm every two weeks.  Sentinel is a 27 foot long ocean rowing boat so it’s designed to be rowed and not sailed. 

The original North Atlantic route, known as the classic route, was first crossed by Frank Samuelson and George Harbo in 1896. For 114 years they held the record for the crossing – 55 days and 7 hours.  In 2010, Leven Brown and his crew of Livar Nysted, Ray Carroll and Don Lennox crossed from New York to St Mary’s in 43 days and 21 hours. This remains the record to this day.

John Ridgeway and Chay Blyth made the crossing in 1966 and the first solo crossing was completed by Tom McClean in 1969 using the shorter route from St Johns’s in Newfoundland to Blacksod Bay in County Mayo in Ireland. He completed it in 71 days.

Tracking and racing against Ian

Ian will not have access to GPS but there is a GPS tracker on the boat so we will be able to see where he is.  The system has been designed by the Hereford firm Kinetic6, the world leaders in secure telecommunications and cyber security. https://www.kinetic6.co.uk

Ian will be sending his estimated coordinates through every day so we will be able to map where Ian is and where he thinks he is. This will be accessed via www.rowsentinel.com

Running alongside Ian’s journey is a rowing challenge for schools and clubs across the UK.  They will be racing Ian each day. This is being organised by the Remigo Ergo Sum (“I Row Therefore I Am”) Concept2 virtual rowing team.  

Side by Side Challenge 26 March 2021

Allied Forces Foundation Side by Side Challenge 2021

The objective of these challenges is to reach out to everyone wanting to take part and get involved in simple events which you can do in your home or with a partner locally to you, or virtual challenge a friend or loved one.  The Side by Side Challenge helps with body, mind, and heart which is great for your health and well-being.

Sign up to join in FREE here

Side by Side challenge 

2 Events (set):

a.  1/4 mile walk, run, bike, or row.

b.  7 (Seven) Super Burpees.

Then go again as many as you can, the goals are:

Bronze      =  1 Set

Silver         =  4 Sets

Gold          =   8 Sets

Platinum  =   16 Sets

Video demonstration from DJ Velky our own physical trainer Here

Please join in and share with community, comrades, friends, and family.

3 Mountain Peaks Challenge – UK

Joshua (Josh) Coghlan just completed the United Kingdom 3 Mountain Peaks challenge (Ben Nevis, Scotland, Scafell Pike, England & Snowdon, Wales) in an amazing 11 hours. Josh did this wonderful challenge for the Allied Forces Foundation (AFF) to raise funds and awareness for our nation’s wounded, ill and injured warriors.

Josh raised a wonderful $476.63 (£357.00) which will be used to support wounded, ill and injured, caregivers on our next group challenge the Cateran Yomp 2021.

Josh at top of Mount Scafell Pike, England
Josh at top of Mount Snowdon, Wales

Please check out our next Virtual event the Appalachian Yomp 3-4 October 2020. You can sign up as an individual, join a team, or make your own team. https://give.alliedforcesfoundation.org/event/virtual-appalachian-yomp-2020/e293649

Chloe’s Birthday Fundraiser

Join Chloe Taylor for her 20th Birthday challenge and fundraiser to help the Allied Forces Foundation. Chloe is raising funds for the upcoming Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) AFF Team. Wounded warriors from different regions will congregate in Washington DC from 22-27 October 2020 to take part in the AFF Marine Corp Marathon activities.

Consider celebrating your birthday by showing support for AFF.

Association United States Army (AUSA) Conference

Association United States Army (AUSA) Conference

Allied Forces Foundation will be represented at AUSA this year at Booth 7965. Will be attending the Military Family Forums. Link below


Please come along to meet the team and learn about our programs for 2020.

We are looking for warriors to support our events and take part in the challenges:

ABF Cateran Yomp 2020 – Perth Scotland – 54 miles in 24hrs

AFF Appalachain Yomp 2020 – Harpers Ferry to Gettysburg – 59 miles in 24hrs


1000 miles Mission Complete – Justin Rowe

1000 miles Mission Complete – Justin Rowe

Justin Rowe finished the run on Saturday 14th September at the USMC Memorial, Arlington Virginia.
It was humbling experience finishing at such an iconic memorial with my family, USMC Guard of Honor from Marine Corps Base Quantico (MCBQ), Arlington Police, Fire, USMC Commander MCBQ, and Royal Marine Commando senior officers to meet me at the finish.
The memory will stay with me forever, especially running the last 10 miles with a good friend and CEO of Allied Forces Foundation, Stuart Taylor.
Justin completed the run in 44 days running a distance of 990.44 miles pulling a trailer (Burley Nomad) weighing 35 kgs / 77Ibs, averaging 22.5 miles a day. Every day I was getting mentally and physically stronger, he could have run another 1.000 miles but I had to return home back with my family.
He has raised $8.000 for the foundation so far, this will help the volunteers carry out their important work of supporting injured allied veterans side by side to take part in physical challenges such as the USMC Marathon, the Cateran Yomp in the highlands of Scotland and supporting veterans with PTS.
Finally, Justin would like to thank the sponsors Providence UK and Burley USA, he wishes you all the health, happiness and success for the future hopefully our paths will cross again in the not too distant future.
Video of Justin Speaking to WUSA news: