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Last Updated: Monday, 18 February 2008, 13:41 GMT
Rise to the challenge for Sport Relief



Cracknell (L) and Walliams will swim the Strait of Gibraltar
Cracknell (L) and Walliams will swim the Strait of Gibraltar
Little Britain star David Walliams will join double Olympic gold medallist James Cracknell to help raise money for the BBC's Sport Relief.

Rower Cracknell will cycle, row and swim from the UK to Africa, with Walliams joining him for the swimming leg of the challenge next month.

In 2006 Walliams raised over 1m for the charity by swimming across the English Channel.

"I'm looking forward to getting back into the sea," said the 36-year-old.

'Challenging swim'

Walliams had been due to be in the US working with his fellow Little Britain partner Matt Lucas but said he became available after the writer's strike finished last week.

"I thought, 'what could I do?' And I thought perhaps I could steal some of James Cracknell's thunder by joining him on the swimming part," he said.

Perhaps I could steal some of James Cracknell's thunder by joining him on the swimming part

David Walliams on why he wanted to take part

"People might think that I did all the rest of it too," he joked.

The star, who plans to swim the 12-mile stretch of the Strait of Gibraltar, said although the distance is shorter than the English Channel there will be other problems to face.

"It's colder and also there's sharks in it and also the sea's a lot rougher, so I think it's going to be a very challenging swim," he said.

Ahead of the task, the pair trained by taking a icy dip at Dorney Lake in Windsor.

"We hyperventilated when we first got in the water because it was so cold and after that your whole body just goes numb," said Cracknell.

He is hoping to set off from the UK on 28 February and will row to mainland Europe before getting on his bike and pedalling through Spain and France.

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It is thought he will cover more than 1,400 miles on his amazing fundraising journey.

This year the big Sport Relief buzz word is 'challenge' and the idea is to do something sporty to raise cash.

The ultimate way to get involved is to take part in one of the Sainsbury's Sport Relief Miles which are happening across the UK on March 16.

This year participants can set their own challenge by having the choice of completing one, three or six Miles. There will be well over 200 Miles all around the UK, so there is bound to be one close to you, all you have to do now is sign up and start getting yourself sponsored.



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