Solo rower Charlie Pitcher insists a chest infection will not stop his ambition of crossing the Atlantic in a world record time.

Weather permitting, Charlie, 50, of Alderton Close, Felsted, will set off in his boat Soma of Essex from the Canary Islands this week.

The father-of-four, who quit his job as a builder to focus on his latest challenge, crossed the Atlantic Ocean in 52 days in 2010.

But this time Charlie is aiming to beat the solo world record of 40 days, 9 hours and 44 minutes.

The Royal Burnham Yacht Club member has been training on the River Crouch and Thames Estuary for the past two years.

Full story in Wednesday's newspaper.

To learn more about Charlie's adventure, visit