A Newcastle casino pushed the boat out to raise £4,805 for charity in support of local police sergeant Sean McGuigan’s transatlantic rowing challenge.
Genting Casino Newcastle hosted a special poker tournament which attracted 29 poker teams and 145 players to raise money for Alzheimer’s Society and St Clare’s Hospice.
To inspire them, the Men of Iron boat which Sean will use to compete in the world’s toughest rowing race, the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, was displayed outside the Forth Street venue.
The sell-out tournament, organised by deputy general manager Jim Brown, Sean and local players Lee Blood and Dan Trett, was hotly contested with a £5,800 prize pool to play for. Donated spot prizes, including signed Newcastle and Sunderland shirts and signed snooker cues from the world’s top twenty and Jimmy White, added to the competitive edge.
The Untouchables team won the £2,900 top prize, with Aspers Dealers and Hetton Social Club coming second and third respectively.
Genting’s Jim Brown said: “We wanted to show our support for Sean who has set a target of raising £100,000 for two great charities by taking on this ambitious Atlantic challenge. The tournament was a big success and we want to thank everyone who took part and gave generously to the cause.
“Our staff came in early to organise a pre-tournament breakfast for the players and really got behind the event to make sure it ran smoothly.”
The funds raised delighted Sean McGuigan who said: “They are a great team at Genting and always looking to support the community and local charities. I really appreciate the efforts made.”
The officer and team mate Andy Warner will set off on 15 December 2015 to row 3000 miles from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua. The feat of endurance could take between 40 to 90 days as they battle the Atlantic weather, tides and currents.