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Hungarian Athlete Ends Transatlantic Trip After Near-Death Experience

Tamás Vaski 2021.01.18.

Six difficult days after his departure, Hungarian extreme athlete Gábor Rakonczay ended the world’s first ever attempt to sail across the Atlantic Ocean on a cabin-free Stand-Up Paddle.

According to his initial plan, the 5,200 kilometer trip would have taken him two months once he left the Canary Islands. The decision to take on such an endeavor, however, proved much more difficult than planned, and the sea was merciless.

During his first evening, Rakonczay realized that he could not sleep at all, and the cold waves battering his vessel quickly soaked through his clothes. By the fourth evening he was hallucinating, and the ocean water felt warm.

This is when he realized that something was seriously wrong, and made the decision to end his trip. After the waves halted attempts of rescue by boat, Rakonczay was eventually extracted by helicopter.

Although he did not achieve his goal, Rakonczay’s deserves commendation for his bravery as the first person to ever attempt such a feat. His fans can be reassured that he is healthy and safe, and future sailors have no doubt been inspired.

Feautered photo via Rakonczay Expediciók – Facebook