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Last Updated: Thursday, 5 January 2006, 08:06 GMT
Oarsman's Antarctica quest fails
Colin Yeates (Solent News and Photo Agency)
Colin Yeates had spent four years preparing for the challenge
A 47-year-old oarsman's bid to become the first to circumnavigate Antarctica solo in a rowing boat has ended in failure only 30 hours after he set off.

Father-of-seven Colin Yeates, of Chandlers Ford, Hampshire, set off from the Falkland Islands on Monday for the 10-month challenge.

But his boat was dragged onto rocks by strong currents and he was forced to watch the vessel get smashed to pieces.

Mr Yeates reached the shore safely and escaped without injury.

Looking confident

The ex-Merchant Navy seaman had hoped to become the first person to complete the 11,300-mile challenge and had been preparing for four years.

He was towed out of Port Stanley on Monday afternoon and was said to be "looking confident".

But after battling local currents, he and his boat hit rocks late on Tuesday night on the northern part of East Falkland at Cow Bay.

His specially-designed and built 22ft rowing boat had been named after its Dorset designer, Charlie Rossiter, from Christchurch.

Before leaving, Mr Yeates described his odyssey as "the most difficult and hazardous circumnavigation of the globe" and one that was "fraught with danger".

He had left the UK on 22 December after enjoying an early Christmas with his wife Kim and their five daughters and two sons, aged between six and 29.


SEE ALSO:
Oarsman set for Antarctica quest
28 Dec 05 |  Hampshire
Oarsman's solo Antarctica quest
02 Nov 05 |  Hampshire
Father-of-two's polar record bid
28 Oct 05 |  Oxfordshire
Yachtman's polar record attempt
04 Aug 05 |  Oxfordshire



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