A PHYSIOTHERAPIST from Didcot is preparing to take on one of the world's toughest challenges – rowing across the Atlantic Ocean.

Jenifer Cullom will join an all-female crew on the 3,000-mile Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

The 30-year-old and her team are hoping to be the first women's team across the finish line in one of the world's toughest rowing challenges next year.

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The team will row 3,000 miles across the Atlantic, battling against the wind, cold, sleep deprivation and extremes of the high seas as part of the One Ocean Crew.

Teammates will row for two hours on and two hours off for up to 40 days making the Atlantic crossing both physically and mentally exhausting.

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The extreme row is in aid of the #OceanMatters campaign which raises awareness of the importance of the oceans for the future of mankind and the planet.

Ms Cullom is well aware just how tough the race is going to be and is no stranger to a challenge.

As the physio for the GB and England Hockey and previously for the Oxford University Boat Clubs she knows the strains she will face in the race.

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Speaking about the challenge she said: “The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge will be a true test of our resilience, pushing each member of the team to their extreme.

"Even getting to the start line requires a Herculean effort of preparation, fundraising and of course physical training."

Ms Cullom has previously rowed for six years racing at Henley Women’s Regatta and she also competed in the Boston Rowing Marathon, however the Atlantic will be a huge challenge even with that extensive experience.

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Ms Cullom, as well as being an accomplished rower, has also completed a triathlon with her first half Ironman last year.

The rower is now getting back on board with training sessions in preparation for the Atlantic crossing next year.

The Atlantic row is a huge challenge for the team, they will be facing 20ft high waves and an average of 1.5 million oar strokes.

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One of the other team members is Natalie Hart, a Costa Book Awards-shortlisted author who has spent time working in conflict environments such as Iraq and Afghanistan and hopes to be calm and collected throughout the journey to help them win the race. She also strongly believes in the environmental cause of the race.

Ms Hart said: “The ocean is a buffer against the worst effects of climate breakdown, it generates half the oxygen we breathe, and it provides sustenance and livelihoods for people across the world. The threats to the ocean go far beyond plastic. We are rowing to tell the story of why the #OceanMatters.”

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The 3,000-mile race starts in La Gomera in the Canary Islands off the coast of Spain and ends in Antigua in the Caribbean.

The rowers need all the support they can get to complete the row and the One Ocean Crew have been supported by tops:health, a physiotherapy clinic in Summertown in Oxford.

The team are now looking for more local businesses to get on board by joining the 250 Sponsorship Club.