65-years old citizen of Lviv has conquered the Atlantic ( translated from Ukrainian)

April 24 2004

Bogdan Yurochko

January 20th this year an ocean rowing regatta, organized by the Ocean Rowing Society, started from a Spanish Island of La Gomera, with finish across the Atlantic ocean in a West-Indies Island of Barbados. 13 teams were competing in this race, one of them was a team of four, six double and six solo rowers.
Our countryman from Lviv Pavel Rezvoy (65) took part in this regatta and became the world oldest person to attempt such a challenge. After crossing the Atlantic in his boat “Marion Lviv” and winning the second place in the class “solo” (arriving only 2 days later after the winner), Pavel came back to his native city and met journalists at Press-conference, organized by the newspaper “Vysoky Zamok”.

The boat, that Pavel rowed across the ocean, had been given to Pavel for free by British rowers. “I consider it to be a real luck, as far as I had no money to pay even a rent fee”, says Mr Rezvoy. Its worth mentioning that 65 years old adventurer, hard as he tried, could not find any support in Ukraine in such a prestigious and important for the country project. The only help he got were UV-filter glasses presented to him by one of Lviv Opticians’ shop.
The distance to cover was 5 thousand kilometers long, “but nobody is rowing as the crow flies” said Mr Rezvoy. “That’s why the total of kilometers rowed was about 6 thousand. Some rowboats are still over there at sea, it’s a pity it takes them so long”.

The voyage started with a problem. Right after the start Pavel’s satellite phone failed to perform, so for the whole journey he was deprived of contact with the rest of the world. Having only 80 liters of fresh water onboard, a water-maker, food and some vodka, Pavel was rowing sometimes for 14 hours a day, having a rest after the noon. “It was almost impossible to row in the afternoon – the heat of the tropical sun was enormous. It was unbearably exhausting to stay on deck, so in the afternoon I used to hide myself in the cabin. Night time appeared to be the best time for efficient rowing”.

Pavel Rezvoy was using the same food as the others – American freeze-dried food. But, according to adventurer’s statement, if not for Ukrainian beacon, onion and beans, it would be more difficult for him to travel – very soon he got bored with the packed meal. “I was fishing the whole journey. Constantly some flying fish kept landing on the deck, so at the beginning I was eating them and later I started to use them only as a bait for bigger fish”.

On his way across the ocean Pavel didn’t get into a single heavy storm, due to his course, which was the most southern one, to compare to the rest of the fleet.
In a couple of weeks the adventurer is planning to go on rowing, this time from Barbados to Cuba. “The Ocean Rowing Society has found that I was quite fresh and not exhausted at the finish, so we worked out this next journey, which nobody has undertaken so far. Though there is a foreign sponsor, Le Shark Casual Wear, ready to cover the expenses, Pavel is still in debts and has to pay back around 15 thousand GBP.

© 1983-2001 Ocean Rowing Society 

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