Little Briton rules the waves

Walliams launches his Channel swim bid

David Walliams has officially launched his attempt to swim the Channel for charity.

The Little Britain star will brave freezing water, gale force winds, and the traffic of the world's busiest shipping route on the 21-mile crossing in his bid to raise money for the BBC’s Sport Relief.

The 34-year-old hopes to complete the swim in under 16 hours, even though fewer than one in ten people who attempt the feat successfully complete it. More people have scaled Everest than swum the Channel.

Walliams said: 'I reckon I have a 50/50 chance of getting across. I hope people see it as a symbolic thing. I've always loved swimming but I didn't really think how cold it would be and how far.'

He has undergone a tough training regime over the past 11 months, despite the rigours of the Little Britain tour, under the  guidance of former Olympic pentathlete Greg Whyte.

Whyte said: ‘The English Channel is the blue riband event of endurance swimming and represents one of the toughest physical challenges on the planet.

‘David has been demonstrating a level of work and commitment as great as any elite athlete I have met.’

Walliams now has five weeks further training ahead of him before he makes his attempt.

An hour-long documentary about his efforts, Little Britain's Big Swim, will be broadcast on BBC One on July 14.

Pledge support at the Sport Relief website

Published: 1 Jun 2006

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.