Priest eyes world record

The Press - - News -

A Rus­sian priest is in Dunedin to launch a world record row­ing at­tempt.

Fe­dor Konyukhov aims to be­come the first per­son to row the South­ern Ocean and around Cape Horn, even­tu­ally com­plet­ing a 27,000km solo cir­cum­nav­i­ga­tion of the world.

The 66-year-old chose Dunedin as his launch site, be­liev­ing it of­fers favourable con­di­tions for his 9-me­tre ves­sel, Akros, dur­ing the first leg of 6000 nau­ti­cal miles.

The Bri­tish-de­signed boat will have to with­stand ex­pected storms and be­ing cap­sized in rough con­di­tions.

The ves­sel has sev­eral en­ergy sources, and even fea­tures a floor heat­ing sys­tem in the cabin.

Konyukhov was or­dained as an Eastern Or­tho­dox priest in 2010. He is a well-known ad­ven­turer and his lat­est quest fol­lows a suc­cess­ful world-first row from Chile to Aus­tralia in 2014.

‘‘I heard about Dunedin be­cause of the Al­ba­tross Cen­tre and for me the al­ba­tross is a sym­bolic bird, al­ways in the air, al­ways where the strong winds are,’’ he said.

‘‘In heavy weather when all birds hide, the al­ba­tross is soar­ing.’’

Each stage is ex­pected to take about 120 days.

The first stage will be­gin later this month, fol­lowed by stage two (Cape Horn to Western Aus­tralia) from De­cem­ber 2019.

The fi­nal stage will be from Aus­tralia to New Zealand in 2020.

Rus­sian ad­ven­turer and Or­tho­dox priest Fe­dor Konyukhov wants to be the first to row the South­ern Ocean and around Cape Horn.

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