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Last Updated: Saturday, 22 July 2006, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
Channel swimmer sets new record
Kevin Murphy
Journalist Kevin Murphy said he was delighted at his achievement
A long-distance swimmer has become "King of the Channel" after swimming the 21-mile route for the 34th time.

Kevin Murphy, 57, set off from Dover, in Kent, early on Friday and arrived in France 15 hours and 14 minutes later at 2245 BST.

His nearest rival, Michael Read, has completed the crossing 33 times.

Mr Murphy, president of the Channel Swimming and Piloting Federation, advised comic David Walliams on his Sport Relief swim earlier this month.

The IRN journalist first swam the English Channel in 1968.

Strong winds

He went on to swim around the Isle of Wight and along the River Thames from Richmond to Gravesend.

Mr Murphy also completed three non-stop crossings from England to France and back again.

Speaking after setting the new record, he said: "The sense of achievement makes it worthwhile when you step ashore and feel absolute awful because you're so tired and hurt so much."

However, he admitted that the last four miles had been particularly tough because of strong winds.

Mr Murphy has vowed to swim the Channel again if Mr Read, who is chairman of the Channel Swimming Association, matches his record.

"If he keeps going, so will I - and he's older than me."

Walliams all set for Super Swim
30 Jun 06 |  Sport Relief

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