Huge shark terrorised Brit soldier in Jaws moment during record-breaking row

A British soldier had his own "Jaws moment" as he set a new world record for rowing the Atlantic Ocean.

Jack Jarvis, 28, bravely navigated killer whale infested waters when he set off from Portugal in December but it was deep into his mammoth challenge when he came face to face with heart-stopping encounters.

The 59 Commando Regiment soldier from Southampton, Hampshire spent 111 days alone at sea with the exception of separate visits from a shark and a pretty boisterous blue marlin whale.

Jack spoke to the Daily Star a few days, and several decent cooked meals, after becoming the first person to row all 4,500 nautical miles between Portugal and Miami, Florida.

Pals have called him mad for sticking his arm into the water in an attempt to catch on camera a shark that had been stalking him.

Jack said: "I saw some incredible wildlife, a marlin, a shark. It was a white tip oceanic shark. I was rowing along and I saw this fin in the water, it was almost like a Jaws moment you know you see it stalking the boat, it was really exciting.

"So yeah it was stalking the boat, I stuck my hand in and was able to get some good pictures of it. I got my GoPro and stuck my hand in the water and everyone's been like 'you're mental'."

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"But I thought as long as I can keep my eye on it and I didn't lose sight of it, I felt pretty safe because I thought if it comes closer than I like then I'll just bring my hand up out the water and I'm safe on the boat.

He added: "It hung around for about five to 10 minutes and then shot off. It's probably not often a shark sees an ocean rowing boat so it was as surprised to see me as I was to see it."

Fortunately the shark's interest in Jack turned out to be harmless but the soldier who is already thinking about his next mad challenge, got more of a fright when a strange bump caused his to boat rock.

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It was again another memorable meeting with wildlife probably wondering what on Earth a man is doing on his own in the middle of the Atlantic.

"I didn't know what it was when it was underwater," Jack said. "It hit my boat and the boat basically rocked and I was like that's not a wave and that's when I saw the grey sort of marlin outline and then I started GoPro-ing and it was when I looked at the footage I was like wow a marlin. "

He continued: "So I was really happy to catch that on video because not many people see them. It was strange because obviously it bumped into the boat and I was like 'what is that?' it was a sensation.

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"You get used to knowing what it feels like to go over a wave and this was different."

As the Daily Star previously reported Jack was living off exclusively freeze dried meals at sea so when he finally pulled up in Miami after 111 days he wasted no time in making up for lost calories.

He said: "My first meal was a burger and chips which was incredible and then I washed it down with two chocolate milkshakes, a bottle of Corona and a can of Coke so a bit weird combination drinks wise but it tasted amazing.

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"We forgot to weigh me when I got in and I had that burger and chips and 100 beers so it seemed a bit pointless to get a weight after but I definitely lost a lot of weight, maybe about 10kg.

"Hopefully with the help of my friends I'll be able to put that weight back on and get back to the body I'm used to."

Jack now has a couple of weeks to catch up family and friends before returning to the military having raised over £62,000 for brain tumour charity Brainstrust.

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