Royal Watch News
Kate Middleton's rowing challenge
Jul 26, 2007, 12:30 GMT
Kate Middleton, the girlfriend of Britain's Prince William, was training to row across the English Channel yesterday (25.07.07).
The 25-year-old brunette was among the 21 female crew members of The Sisterhood rowing team who will race the all-male Brotherhood to France next month in a traditional Chinese dragon boat.
Kate has been given one of the most demanding positions in the boat on the tiller. While the rest of the crew row, Kate will steer and shout instructions.
The Sisterhood have been training for the Cross Channel Challenge before or after work three days a week.
Among the chosen crew - which includes two reserves - are a model, a former ballerina, professional adventurers and international athletes.
Kate - a qualified sailor - was persuaded to join The Sisterhood by her former Marlborough college classmate Alicia Fox-Pitt.
Crew member Emma Sayle, 29, told Britain's Daily Telegraph newspaper: "I had recruited friends from school and university. One of those was Alicia who suggested that Kate would be perfect. She was sporty at school.
"But it wasn't a question of 'Oh, she's Kate Middleton so she makes the team'. She has had to prove herself. We launched the challenge in November, and Kate joined in April. Our coach said she could join only if she was up to it.
"Kate has done all the training and she's really committed. She is physically very fit. But she is also strong mentally.
"It might look easy, but being on the tiller is hard.
The Beauty v Brawn race is scheduled for August 25, and will start at Dover's Shakespeare Beach.
The winning team will be the first to complete the 21-mile race and land at Cap Gris Nez, just west of Calais.
The teams are raising money for the Babes in Arms charity, which sponsors research into abnormalities in newborn babies, and the children's hospice charity CHASE.
(C) BANG Media International