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Sport Relief Hell on High Seas: Celebrities set sail from Belfast for charity challenge

By Allan Preston

TV presenter Alex Jones and a crew of celebrities set sail from Belfast Marina for an epic 1,000 nautical mile voyage in aid of Sport Relief.

For her Hell On High Seas challenge, BBC One Show presenter Jones is being joined on a 65ft yacht by a team of six experienced sailors.

Also on board will be fellow presenter Angellica Bell, English stand-up comic Hal Cruttenden, comedian Doon Mackichan, BBC Sport's Ore Oduba and motor sports broadcaster Suzi Perry. With a storm predicted for tomorrow, the crew did not decide until last night which route was safest to take to avoid the worst of the weather.

Scrapping their plan to go around the Scottish coast and on to London, the crew will now go south along the English coast, past Lands End, and will arrive in London or Newcastle depending on the weather.

The weather also forced the team to set off at midnight on Sunday to beat an incoming storm.

"You can't really prepare," Jones told the Belfast Telegraph.

"It's all mental, that you'll be in a small space for a long time, sleeping at an angle, sleeping at a very uncomfortable bunk, not eating proper food. Emotionally it's a harder challenge than physically."

To raise money and to get involved, sign up to this year's Sport Relief Flagship Games in Belfast at Custom House Square on March 20 at sportrelief.com/Belfast.

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