A JERSEY duo who are rowing across the Atlantic could be heading for a photo-finish with their nearest rivals after more than seven weeks at sea.
Peter Wright and Steve Hayes were yesterday ranked 32nd overall in the 3,000-mile Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, and leaders in the open-pair class.
On the 45th day since leaving La Gomera in the Canary Islands, bound for Antigua, the Islanders were just three miles ahead of their open-pair rivals, Darryl Thole, from England, and his South African cousin Sean Geiser.
Although projected finish times vary constantly, one forecast earlier this week showed DragonFish, the Jersey boat, set to finish in the early hours of Thursday 2 February, just four minutes ahead of rival boat Two-Inna-Row.
The two crews formed part of a cluster of six boats within 50 miles of each other and around 400 miles from the finish line.
A total of 21 crews had completed the race by yesterday morning, with another 21 still competing. Back marker Linda Emilsen, a solo rower from Norway, was reported to be 1,800 miles from the finish.
Mr Wright, a finance director at Prosperity 24/7, and Mr Hayes, general manager at the Somerville Hotel, have had to battle with flying fish and a series of technical hitches during their crossing, but appear to have retained their sense of humour according to some upbeat posts on their Facebook page.
The duo raised around £120,000 to take part in the event, with some of the money funding their boat, which cost £25,000. They are seeking to raise £50,000 for the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and cancer charity Macmillan Jersey. Donations can be made at dragonfishrow.com.