Surf's up for world record bid
Published 30/01/2010 | 08:38
A group of surfers have announced their plan to break the world record for the fastest crossing of the English Channel by stand-up paddleboard.
The five paddlers are hoping to raise £10,000 through the challenge and raise awareness of the campaigns of Surfers Against Sewage (SAS).
In the first event of its kind, the paddleboarders will set off from Dover and aim to arrive in Calais about five hours later, having completed the crossing of one of the world's busiest shipping lanes.
The event will be taking place between June 18 and 25 depending on weather and tide conditions.
If the paddlers are successful, they will be the first stand-up paddleboard team to have crossed the English Channel.
They also aim to break the Guinness World Record for the fastest stand-up paddleboard crossing which is currently held by American Michael O'Shaughnessy, who completed the challenge in five hours and nine minutes in 2006.
The team is being led by Matt Argyle, chairman of the British Stand-up Paddle Association (BSUPA) and the second ranked in the UK for paddleboarding.
The 37-year-old, from Bracklesham, West Sussex, said at the event launch in West Wittering, West Sussex: "My friends all think I'm mad and my family are all a bit resigned to it.
"It's going to be interesting. The distance is not going to be such a worry but it's crossing one of the busiest shipping lanes and the weather conditions which are going to be the problems.
"It's daunting but exciting. It's too good an opportunity to miss. How many times in a lifetime do you get the chance to cross the Channel under your own steam?"