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World Record attempt supporting SOS Children


British record-breaking helicopter pilots Jennifer Murray, 66, and Colin Bodill, 55, will take off on Tuesday 5 December 2006 from Fort Worth Alliance Airport, Texas, to once again attempt setting a new world record for flying around the world via the South and North Poles. The trip will also be promoting the work of SOS Children’s Villages, stopping en-route to visit some of the children in the charity’s care.

The pilots will travel for 169 days, visit 34 countries and cover 36,206 nautical miles.

Polar First team at the Bell Helicopter HQ

The pilots’ flight follows their last attempt in 2003 when on December 20th, 58 days into their journey and two days after reaching the South Pole, they crashed in whiteout conditions on the Ronne Ice Shelf in Antarctica. Both pilots sustained serious injuries and their crash was reported by media around the globe. Many might have called it a day after such an experience but Jennifer, 66 years old, and Colin, 55 years old, are determined to re-attempt the challenge.

"We’ve always said we’ll have another go, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do - we’ve got unfinished business," said Jennifer Murray. "Happily many of our previous sponsors are as keen as we are to see this unique record re-attempted, so with their support, together with some new ones, we’re hoping to complete the world record by May 2007.”

Jennifer Murray, now 66 years old, learnt to fly helicopters at the age of 54. "There is an exciting addition to this trip. We will be working in partnership with the Royal Geographical Society (RGS) with IBG, giving a core group of 30 schools along the route and children world wide the opportunity to take part in a global environmental, online project. We will also be visiting these schools during our journey, acting as the dynamic link.” And as part of the trip, the pilots will also be raising money for SOS Children.

Jennifer continues, “There is bound to be a certain amount of trepidation on our part as we embark on this journey, and crossing the Ronne Ice Shelf where we crashed last time will be emotional. However what drives me on is our unique project with the RGS, the enthusiasm the schools and children are showing for the project, and of course the unstinting support and encouragement from our sponsors,” she concludes.

We’ll be keeping you posted on the journey, but for extra information why not visit

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