Rider returns to Male’ after paddling across 8 atolls in 8 days for world record

Damien Rider commences gives interview to press after completing expedition to paddle across eight Maldivian islands in eight days for a world record. (Sun Photo/Naail Hafeez)

Popular extreme adventure sports athlete, Damien Rider, on Tuesday, returned to Male’ City after successfully concluding an expedition where he padded across eight Maldivian islands in eight days for a world record.

Rider’s world record expedition spanning 480 kilometers kicked off from Hulhumale’ on February 17th, and concluded on February 24th, at zero degrees, which is the equator.

This marks the longest distance paddled in the Maldives and will also make him the only person to paddle this channel.

Rider utilized a paddle boat specifically build for the expedition in Thailand.

Rider, in an interview to Sun, confirmed receiving the world record.

Describing his journey as extremely challenging – Rider said that it was difficult to stand for 12 hours straight daily to paddle. He emphasized facing further difficulties over combined factors such as the heat, direction of winds and currents.

Rider said some people were doubtful whether he could complete the expedition and achieve the work record. Hence, he said the successful conclusion of the expedition, therewith, was a huge achievement.  

“I had three things I wanted to achieve for myself on the paddle personally. That is crossing the channel, and then reaching Vaadhoo and then the equator also. We did it. It was a team effort,” he also said.

During the expedition, Rider made stops at seven islands.

“The local people at every island we stopped at were absolutely incredible,” he added.

Rider said he will continue to pursue extreme challenges in the future as well.

A documentary on Rider’s Maldives’ expedition will be released in May.

Rider is an extreme adventure sports athlete who holds 15 world records. He is also a popular author and motivational speaker.

Rider has previously paddled solo, 800 kilometers for 17 days, in the most shark-infested summer Australia has ever seen.