PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – They set out to break a world record, knowing it would take more than two days to reach their goal.
But, two recent graduates from Winchester Thurston High School did it last night.
Fifty hours after they began at the Steel City Rowing Club in Verona, Ben Akers and Wes Fox broke the world record for continuous rowing.
“Pretty good. I mean, still got that back pain going on, but it’s bearable,” Fox said.
They actually went 52 hours just for good measure.
“It hasn’t really sunk in that we actually beat the record. I am just looking forward to going to sleep,” Akers said.
Their record row started Tuesday – a few short hours after they got back to Pittsburgh from powering real boats.
“Considering that these boys four days ago were in Princeton, New Jersey rowing in the national championships, which took a tremendous amount of training, and then they decided they would engage in this marathon [indoor rowing machine] session. It was a little intense and crazy, but we are super proud of them,” Akers’ mother, Cindy Gerber, said.
“They showed a lot of perseverance especially through the long nights. I think it takes a lot of dedication to set a goal and to really stick with it through the long nights and the long days,” Wesley’s mother, Lori Fox, said.
Supporters came and went from the club during the row to do what they could to support the boys.
“I am very proud. I mean, I am always proud of him, but especially in this. It’s pretty amazing,” Akers’ girlfriend, Luka Van de Venna, said.
Now, they can say they witnessed a world record.