Surfer takes world record with eight-mile ride
Tuesday 11 April 2006
He was among 1,000 surfers taking part in a competition on the Severn estuary, which has the second highest tidal range in the world.
The race last Thursday began at Newnham-on-Severn, where the four-foot wave was at its peak, and by the time it had travelled two miles inland, all the competitors - including professionals from the United States and Australia - had come off their boards except Mr King.
"It was the most incredible experience of my life," Mr King said yesterday. "Hundreds of surfers were falling off their boards every minute, but I managed to stay on and keep my nerve. As time went on, people kept shouting encouragement to me from the bank, so I knew then that I had a chance to break the record.
"One hour 17 minutes went by until the wave broke and I was able to crawl out to the bank and find out exactly how far I'd gone. I jumped for joy when I was told I was a record-breaker."
Mr King has been riding with friends from the Severn Bore Surfers Club for more than 20 years. They ride a tidal phenomenon - known as a bore - which occurs when a rush of water is funnelled into the 30-mile estuary's narrow channel.
It starts at the mouth of the estuary at Avonmouth near Bristol and reaches as far inland as Gloucester. The phenomenon occurs 12 times a year during the spring and autumn equinox, when a wave is formed every morning for between two or three days.
Mr King said his experience of the bore kept him on his feet: "[It] was very tiring and mentally draining... but it was worth every second of pain."
The National director of the British Surfing Association, Karen Walton, said the "remarkable sporting feat" was witnessed by a BSA official who confirmed it was a new world record.
- 1 I was a Woman Against Feminism too
- 2 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 3 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 4 The Tory donor whose firm is one of Britain’s biggest tax avoiders - with HMRC's blessing
- 5 John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned
Peaches Geldof: Her final day – and her fatal decision
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
Israel-Gaza conflict: Israel may have committed war crimes, says UN human rights chief
Peaches Geldof inquest: Tragic final days of mother-of-two's life reveal she lied to husband about failed heroin tests
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
£20000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitment Company...
competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My Client are a successful software hous...
competitive: Progressive Recruitment: This really is a fantastic chance to joi...
£45000 - £53000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: **MS DYNAMICS N...