Rugby player to swim Atlantic
He is an overweight British rugby player who says he was "never much of a swimmer". But this month, Dan Martin will set off to become the first person to swim the entire Atlantic, coast to coast.
The 30-year-old farmer's son from Peterborough has trained for more than three years for the 3,500-mile trek from New York to Brest in France, bulking up to 20 stone.
In less than a fortnight he will start his journey from the north-west US coast across the ocean, which he estimates will take between four and six months. It will be the first stage of his 18-month "global triathlon".
Having landed in Brest, he plans to cycle across Europe through Siberia in mid-winter. The final leg will be to run across North America and Canada, back to New York.
Mr Martin is raising money for impoverished children and will swim for eight hours each day. He will sleep on a research yacht.
The only successful transatlantic swim was in 1998, when Benoit Lecomte took 73 days to swim from Cape Cod to north-west France. But Mr Lecomte was aided by his boat drifting on strong currents towards his destination.
Mr Martin will use GPS equipment to return each morning to the spot where he finished the previous night.
"I am fluctuating between excitement and nervousness," he said.