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|Wednesday, May 30, 2001, updated at 16:41(GMT+8)|
Zhang Jian Prepares to Cross English ChannelZhang Jian, who successfully swam across the Bohai Straits a year ago, is now busy preparing for the activity of crossing the English Channel this July, striving to be the first Chinese conquering this famous channel.
This activity of Zhang, co-sponsored by Beijing Daily, Beijing Evening News and Beijing Morning Post, enjoys the support from people of all walks of life.
Recently, his training has entered the phase of adaptability to the natural water region. On May 22, he finished a 22-km, 6-hour swimming practice over Jinhai Lake. The major reason for his choice of Jinhai Lake is that the lake water temperature is at 17ˇăC, almost the same as that of the English Channel. In addition, in accordance with the relevant regulations of the British Straits Swimming Association, swimmers must undergo a 6-hour low-temperature swimming test before crossing the Straits. Zhang Jian felt quite easy and relaxed after the test, he said that even if swimming for another 6 hours, he would not have any problem.
According to reports, some 8,000 swimmers have attempted to cross the 33.8-km-wide English Channel, 600 have succeeded. The most difficult thing for swimmers is the low water temperature, if a swimmer wants to be successful, he must swim over a distance of 45-50 km for 12 hours without let-up at water temperature of 17ˇăC.
A 400-member team has been formed to go to Britain and France together with Zhang Jian to back him up.
By PD Online staff member Li Yan
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