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Last Updated: Sunday, 15 June, 2003, 13:35 GMT 14:35 UK
Devon rower sets record
Simon chalk
Simon Chalk is the youngest man to make the 3,200 mile journey
A Devon oarsman has completed his solo bid to row across the Indian Ocean.

The Ocean Rowing Society website says Simon Chalk, a property developer from Newton Abbot, crossed the line of longitude in waters north of Mauritius on Sunday.

It means Mr Chalk, 30, has become the youngest man and the first Briton to row the 3,200 miles from Kalbarri, Western Australia.

Mr Chalk, 30, has been at sea for 108 days after setting off from Kalbarri on 27 February.

I'll be land-sick
Simon Chalk

He will now make his way to Mauritius where a welcome party with the President of Mauritius is planned.

In the latest message on his website at BBC Devon Online Mr Chalk said: "My legs are so weak I'll probably need help walking.

"After 109 days at sea, it'll feel as if the land's moving for a while.

Simon Chalk's route

"I'll be land-sick!"

During the voyage Mr Chalk has had a constant battle with storm force winds and rough seas, and he was eventually forced to change his route.

This is not the first time he attempted the epic journey.

His last attempt on the Indian Ocean last May ended when he and his partner clung to their capsized boat for 15 hours in shark-infested waters before rescue.

The first and only other oarsman to complete the solo row was Swede Anders Svedlund in 1971, who was believed to have made the trip from Kalbarri to Madagascar in just 64 days.

Rower nears end of challenge
13 Jun 03  |  Devon
Solo rower's near miss
04 Jun 03  |  Devon
Ocean rower injured during storm
04 Jun 03  |  Hereford/Worcs
Rower targets new destination
01 Jun 03  |  Devon
Rower blown badly off course
15 May 03  |  Devon
Rower under a cloud
28 Apr 03  |  Devon
Ocean rower's boat in danger
24 Apr 03  |  Devon


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