Bertish sets two new world records for charity
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GUINNESS Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) Surfing World Record-holder Chris Bertish’s wish for Christmas came true when he set two world records to raise funds to build a new school and feed hungry children.
Bertish set the record on December 22, 2016, while paddling in one of the greatest solo, open ocean adventures attempted from mainland Morocco to the Canary Islands to become the first person to paddle unsupported and unassisted across 300 miles of open ocean.
Earlier last week, following his departure on December 6, he had broken Bart de Zwart’s world record for the furthest distance paddled, solo and unsupported as he covered 193 miles, about 10 miles offshore.
“Knowing that we’ve almost raised enough (so far through #theSupCrossing presented by Carrick Wealth) to build one school and to feed and make an exponential difference for so many more kids is the best Christmas present I could receive,” Bertish said.
His main purpose in embarking on The SUP Crossing, he said, was to leave a legacy by raising funds for The Lunchbox Fund, Operation Smile and Signature of Hope charities.
Their target is to raise over a million dollars and make the entire project a completely self-sustainable charity initiative, explained Bertish.
From the Canary Islands the rest of his SUP crossing journey will take him across 4 660 miles of open ocean, travelling the equivalent of a marathon a day for over 120 days in a row.
Bertish said he would follow the same route to his final destination in Nelson’s Dockyard English Harbour, Antigua, as the paddlers in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge that started in the Canary Islands.
He said the Challenge’s teams would row more than 3 000 nautical miles across the Atlantic from San Sebastian in La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua.
He mentioned a South African team of paddlers comprising Stuart Connacher, Charl Gale and Wayne Johnson of Team Facing It were currently leading the challenge’s Pure Trio Class.
Bertish will also be doing research and raising conservation awareness for the Two Oceans Aquarium over the course of the crossing of the Atlantic.