'The impossible is possible' - Cambs' Kat Cordiner breaks Atlantic record

St Neots Kat Cordiner and her two teammates have broken the world record for rowing across the Atlantic.

Kat, 42, who has secondary ovarian cancer, and her two teammates Abby Johnston and Charlotte Irving, have broken the world record for rowing across the Atlantic. - Credit: Cancer Research UK

St Neots Kat Cordiner – who has incurable cancer – and her two teammates have broken the world record for rowing across the Atlantic. 

Kat, 42, who has secondary ovarian cancer, and her two teammates Abby Johnston and Charlotte Irving, arrived in Antigua on Sunday evening. 

St Neots Kat Cordiner has broken the world record for rowing across the Atlantic.

Kat, 42, who has secondary ovarian cancer, and her two teammates Abby Johnston and Charlotte Irving, have broken the world record for rowing across the Atlantic. - Credit: Cancer Research UK

The women completed the 3,000-mile crossing from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to English Harbour in 42 days, seven hours and 17 minutes, knocking an astonishing seven days off the female trio record in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

The women were given an emotional dockside welcome by family and friends who had flown out to celebrate with them. 

As they stepped onto land for the first time since December 12, they said they felt "wobbly, overwhelmed and happy". 

MORE: Cambs woman with incurable cancer gets royal send-off for Atlantic row

Rowing the world's second largest ocean is acknowledged as the ultimate endurance race.  

More people have summitted Mount Everest than have successfully rowed the Atlantic and fewer than 20 per cent of ocean rowers are women. 

Most Read

It is thought Kat is the first person to tackle this challenge as a cancer patient. 

The women are raising money for Cancer Research UK, Macmillan Cancer Support and The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity. 

Race organisers said they had shown “the impossible was possible”. 

St Neots’ Kat Cordiner with crewmates Charlotte Irving, 31 and Abby Johnston, 32.

St Neots’ Kat Cordiner with crewmates Charlotte Irving, 31 and Abby Johnston, 32. - Credit: Atlantic Campaigns

The trio were on a boat called Dolly Parton - rowing two hours on and two hours off continuously and unsupported. 

When they set off, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, sent them a hand-written good luck message wishing them "fair winds and following seas". 

During their epic trip they experienced scorching heat, enormous night-time waves, sleep deprivation, blisters and callouses on their hands, and sharks trailing their small boat. 

However, they got through with sheer determination and making their own entertainment. 

As they arrived, the waiting crowds were told: "If you followed their social media, these ladies made rowing the Atlantic look like one big party at Club Dolly Parton with karaoke, Hawaiian shirts, face glitter and glow sticks." 

St Neots’ Kat Cordiner sets off on her 3,000-mile charity row across the Atlantic. 

St Neots’ Kat Cordiner sets off on her 3,000-mile charity row across the Atlantic. - Credit: Atlantic Campaigns

Along the way they celebrated Christmas, New Year and Kat's 42nd birthday, cracking open a bottle of prosecco. 

Money is still pouring in but the women hope to raise £100,000 to be shared between the three cancer charities. 

Simon Ledsham, director of fundraising for Cancer Research UK said: "We are in awe of what Kat, Abby and Charlotte have taken on and achieved.  

“They are remarkable supporters, not least Kat, who is an inspiration to thousands of other people facing their own cancer journey.”