«K 9» is afloat!
September 9th was a rainy and gray day in the small town of Burnham in Crouch, UK, but to a small group of people gathered at a local marina, the drizzly weather was the least of their worries. The “K9” ocean row boat was scheduled to touch the water. Fedor Konyukhov along with the builders and designers of the boat, friends and sponsors were waiting for this moment since the beginning of the construction of “K9”. It’s always exciting and nerve-racking to see a boat making its first contact with the water. How is it going to perform afloat? Is it going to be balanced in the water? The anticipation of a gathered crowd was rewarded with a nice picture of a perfectly balanced “K9” once it gently left the trailer. Fedor Konyukhov was in the boat when it touched the water and judging by the look on his face, he was immensely pleased with the transition. Not wasting time, Fedor gently turned the boat 360 degrees and headed out of the marina towards the North Sea. Despite the rain Fedor spent a few hours rowing and testing the boat.
Afterwards Fedor Konyukhov shared his excitement with his friends: “I am so happy, just like a child. My first impression of the boat is most positive. It’s light and easy to maneuver. It’s only 250kg right now, but I can already imagine its full potential once it’s equipped and ready for the journey. My dream of crossing the Pacific Ocean has gotten so much closer to becoming a reality. It’s been 10 years since my last ocean rowing (across the Atlantic Ocean), and ever since that time I wanted to face the Pacific Ocean in a row boat. I’m proud that people who helped me with my Atlantic crossing are helping me with the construction and support of this project. Hopefully, we’ll have the same good fortune with in the Pacific as we did during my Atlantic crossing.”
Fedor Konyukhov has chosen the longest route across the Pacific Ocean starting from Chilean sea-port Valparaiso and heading towards the east coast of the Australian continent. He will spend most of his time on the ocean in the 30-35th South latitudes, which means he will navigate around such islands as Robinson Crusoe, Easter Island and Pitcairn Islands.
Fedor Konyukhov’s friends and sponsors of this project witnessed the important step in this project and shared the contagious excitement and enthusiasm of the explorer. Here is a list of proud sponsors of the “South America – East Australia 2013-2014” endeavor: Ural Ski Resort, Ural Yacht Club, and Seyho Motors.
“K9” will be presented at the Southampton Boat show between September 13 -22. It will be the only ocean row boat this year and Fedor Konyukhov will be the only participant from Russia. Both of these facts will undoubtedly draw some attention to the project.
The Russian TV channel NTV put together an excellent video of the “K9” first day on the water.