Turkish rower embarks on ocean-spanning voyage

Turkish rower embarks on ocean-spanning voyage
Erden Eruc departs from New York to row to Turkey to commemorate those who died in Gallipoli campaign

 Record-breaking Turkish rower Erden Eruc has set off on his latest adventure – an ocean-spanning voyage from New York to western Turkey.

Eruc, who has recorded world records as the first man to circumnavigate the world by manpower and the first to row three oceans, departed from Manhattan’s North Cove marina in a two-seater boat on Saturday to row about 5,600 nautical miles to Gallipoli.

The 54-year-old graduate of Istanbul’s Bogazici University plans to reach ANZAC Cove in February in time to attend the 101st anniversary of the Canakkale Victory and Martyrs’ Day on March 18.

The Turkish Cypriot adventurer has already notched up a long list of achievements, including the record for being the solo ocean rower who has spent the longest time at sea – 312 days crossing the Pacific.

Last year he was listed in the Guinness World Records as the first person to complete a solo, self-propelled circumnavigation of the globe, having already been listed as the first person to row three oceans.

Eruc will row alongside Australian Kendon Glass as far as Morocco before being joined by Britain’s Mark Gasson.

His boat will fly the Turkish, Australian and New Zealand flags to commemorate those who lost their lives in the Allies’ ill-fated Gallipoli campaign in World War I, which saw more than 86,000 Ottoman troops and 11,000 ANZAC soldiers killed.

“During our time of endless conflicts and the resulting human losses around the world, reconciliation and lasting peace seem increasingly elusive but 100 years ago on the Gallipoli peninsula, nations who fought against each other achieved such reconciliation while mourning the perished on each side,” Eruc said on his Row for Peace website.