When row, row, row your boat doesn’t take you gently across the ...

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When row, row, row your boat doesn’t take you gently across the sea

Unexpected weather has seen a Cape Town adventurer shelve his rowboat record attempt, for the moment

Senior reporter

It was around midnight, about 18 hours after setting off for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in a rowboat the size of a cupboard, that Zirk Botha realised he had gone backwards. Not north towards Cape Columbine, but south, dropping below Robben Island, off Cape Town, before calling it quits and phoning the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI).

“They said they had been watching me through the night,” Botha told Sunday Times Daily this week. “At that stage I was 13 nautical miles offshore, but the wind pushed me all the way back — I was south of Robben Island again.”

The 59-year-old adventurer set off last weekend from Granger Bay on a solo mission to become the first person to row unassisted across the South Atlantic in a rowboat he made with help from a Cape Town boat builder...

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