Celebrity crew complete the BT Sport Relief Challenge: Hell on High Seas and raise a staggering £944,288

20th June 2017

Six exhausted and weather-worn celebrities crossed the finish line of the BT Sport Relief Challenge: Hell on High Seas at 7pm today (Friday 11th March), having clocked up an incredible 800 n/m in a challenge which saw them sail from Belfast to London, in a feat of pure physical, mental and emotional endurance.  The challenge, which is sponsored by BT - a long-term supporter of Sport Relief challenges since 2009, has already raised £944,288 for Sport Relief 2016.

The One Show’s Alex Jones, TV presenter Angellica Bell, Comedian Hal Cruttenden, Actress Doon Mackichan, and TV presenters Ore Oduba and Suzi Perry set sail from Belfast Harbour at 7am on Monday 7th March.  On reaching the finish at the HMS Belfast, docked on the Thames in London, the celebrity crew said “this challenge has been sublime, it’s been ridiculous and we have experienced more than most sailors will do in a lifetime”.

During the week, the celebrity crew were pushed to their absolute limits as they battled against gale-force winds of 29 knots, waves of up to 10ft, relentless sea-sickness, lack of sleep, not to mention a terrifying moment on day two where the boat nearly capsized.

The elements were against them from the outset and with no respite from the brutal conditions, even the most menial tasks, like brushing their teeth, became impossible. The phenomenal feat hit its climax on day three when the were forced to attempt to outpace impending storms by racing the yacht at phenomenal speeds with 30+ knots of wind, steep waves and low tides, in order to make it to shelter safely.

The team were living, sleeping and working on the Volvo Ocean 65 - a carbon-fibre speed machine that has been optimized for maximum performance. At 65 feet, and weighing in at 12,500 kgs the vessel is as long as five cars and weighs the equivalent of twelve great white sharks.

  • The crew still need the public’s support to spur them on at sea by sponsoring them now at sportrelief.com/highseas

  • Inspired by the challenge? Then take on your own challenge by signing up to the Sport Relief Games, go to sportrelief.com/events to find out how.

As of 7pm on Friday the team had raised an incredible £944, 288 for Sport Relief, which will help transform the lives of some of the most disadvantaged people both at home in the UK and across the world’s poorest communities.

The BT Sport Relief Challenge: Hell on High Seas isn’t the first Sport Relief Challenge BT has sponsored. From Davina’s Beyond Breaking Point, John Bishop’s Week of Hell, David Walliams’ epic swims, not to mention Jo Brand’s Hell of a Walk earlier this year where she trekked an incredible 135 miles from one side of the country to the other; BT has been there all the way.


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About Comic Relief

Comic Relief is a UK charity which aim to create a just world, free from poverty – where everyone is safe, healthy, educated and empowered. Since 1985, Comic Relief has raised over £1 billion. That money has helped, and is helping, people living incredible tough lives, both here at home in the UK and across the world.

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