Veteran rower Victor Mooney wants to take another stab at an amazing challenge: rowing across the Atlantic Ocean.
According to AOL News, the 45-year-old New York African American man announced that he would try to row the Atlantic Ocean for a third time, this time rowing from Cape Verde to Brooklyn. Mooney’s goal is to raise awareness for AIDS, which claimed his brother nearly three decades ago.
“This is something I’m dedicated to doing,” Mooney told AOL News. “And with God’s blessings, I can make it.”
According to his Web site, he’s backed by a bevy of supporters including the National Urban League and the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief. Mooney’s 5,000-mile journey will begin this month and is scheduled to end at the Brooklyn Bridge nearly six months later.
In 2006, Mooney made his first attempt to row across the Atlantic Ocean, but the journey ended early as his rowboat flooded. The Senegalese Navy later rescued him.
Then, in 2009, he made a second attempt to cross the Atlantic, but his desalination equipment for purifying water malfunctioned 300 miles out of Senegal.
Mooney told CBS New York that he’s confident that his rowboat will prevail this time.
“This is a better boat,” he said of the state of the art rowboat that is an enclosed-hull craft designed by a French naval architect and equipped with a Global Positioning System navigation tool. “It’s a carbon fiber boat. We increased the solar panels and also added a wind turbine,” he told CBS New York.
Mooney is budgeting $50,000 for the journey and is trying to raise an extra $10,000 for mounting expenses.
According to The New York Times, Mooney began rowing in 2000. He received formal training from a rowing coach in Vermont and took emergency training courses at the Merchant Marine Academy.
Mooney planned to visit South Africa prior to his journey from Cape Verde to promote AIDS testing alongside President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief, but according to an update on his Web site, that trip has been delayed.