Maxime Chaya, the first Lebanese to climb Mount Everest, looked to set two more Guinness World Records as his team of three landed in the Mauritius Islands Monday after rowing 5,801 kilometers across the Indian Ocean.
Chaya, along with team members Livar Nysted, 42, from the Faroe Islands, and Stuart Kershaw, 33, from the United Kingdom, set a new speed record for the fastest time rowing across the Indian Ocean at 57 days and 16 hours. They are also the first team of three to row across any of the world’s oceans.
Chaya, Nysted and Kershaw departed from Perth, Australia, on June 8 for a trip that lasted just under two full months on board an 8.8 meter rowboat.
Before setting off, Chaya was most concerned about the psychological strain of the journey, he told The Daily Star in a pre-trip interview.
The three men were on two-hour, rotating sleep cycles in order to share rowing duties. When they weren’t sleeping or rowing, they were trying to make up for their huge calorie deficits by stuffing their faces with 6,000-7,000 calories a day of dehydrated meals, chocolate, trail mix and other snacks.
Chaya regularly posted pictures and details of serene sunsets and sunrises, as well as the various wildlife the men encountered: albatross, flying fish, families of whales and sharks.
The crew also encountered its fair share of snafus. Smack in the middle of the trip, the men had to resort to their limited fresh water supply after their desalinator – which made potable water from the ocean – broke down for about a week. The autopilot also gave out near the end of the trip.
That and a number of other potential catastrophes caused by stormy seas were either fixed or abated.
The so-called tRIO boat was equipped with satellite communications, enabling the crew to stay in contact with their weatherman, fans and loved ones. Judging by the tone of his Twitter posts, Chaya and his teammates were getting a little stir crazy by the end of the trip.
“I long for a shower. A Bed. Warm hug. Dry clothes. Shave. Full night’s sleep,” Chaya posted on Twitter alongside a photo of himself looking bearded and exhausted.
In another post on July 31, a week before landing, he posted: “We’ve spotted a floating plastic bottle and toothbrush today! Ahhhh! The joy of witnessing civilization again after so long.”
Maxime Chaya and his teammates, Livar Nysted and Stuart Kershaw, set off from Geraldton (West Australia) on Sunday June 9th at 9:00 am aboard their row boat tRIO have reached their final destination in the Mauritius Island on Monday August 5th , 2013.
3 World Records:
- New Speed Record for rowing the Indian Ocean
- First 3 man crew to row the Indian Ocean
- First 3 man crew to row any ocean