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 Saturday, 4 January, 2003, 10:16 GMT
Rower aims for ocean record
Simon Chalk and Rob Munslow
Simon Chalk and Rob Munslow test the new boat
A Devon rower has unveiled the boat he hopes will take him across the Indian Ocean in a record-breaking time.

Simon Chalk, 30, from Newton Abbot first attempted the challenge last May.

But he had to be rescued off the west coast of Australia when the boat capsized.

Now he has a new boat, and a new rowing partner, Robert Munslow, 24, from Monmouth, Wales.

Click here to see map of journey

Property developer Mr Chalk, said: "It's the first double-handed row across the Indian Ocean. It has only been rowed single-handed, 30 years ago.

"So it's a true record and we are also after the time record that was set then."

The pair will row more than 3,000 miles from Kalbarri in western Australia to the Reunion Islands off the coast of Madagascar.

And they will be hoping that the new boat will be able to correct itself if capsized.

Spurred on

Mr Chalk's attempt last May ended after just three days when the boat was flipped over by a freak wave more than 60 miles off the west Australian coast.

He and his partner Bill Greaves, 41, clung to the hull for 15 hours before being rescued.

Rob Munslow:
Rob Munslow: Atlantic attempt failed
But rather than deter him, that experience has spurred him on try again.

Mr Chalk said: "It was a freak accident and if we had failed in any other way, I think we would have been daunted about going back."

Mr Munslow, whose attempt to row across the Atlantic was scuppered by a broken rudder last July, said: "Simon and I get on really well.

"It's been a hardship at times, but you cannot beat the beauty of being out there and just rowing a boat.

"I just want to row into a port and know that I have crossed an ocean on a rowing boat."

If the weather conditions are right, the pair hope to set off in April or early May.

(click here to return)


Click here to go to Devon
See also:

08 Jul 02 | Scotland
25 May 02 | Wales
18 May 02 | England
01 Mar 02 | England
30 Mar 01 | Asia-Pacific
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