Entertainment

Tom Daley carried to bathroom after Comic Relief challenge

The Olympic champion diver completed 290 miles of rowing, swimming, cycling and running in the four-day challenge.

Tom Daley has said his husband had to carry him to the toilet after he completed his Hell Of A Homecoming challenge for Comic Relief.

The Olympic gold medal-winning diver crossed the finish line on Thursday, completing 290 miles of rowing, swimming, cycling and running in a gruelling four-day mission from London to his home town of Plymouth in Devon.

The 27-year-old braved heavy rain, wind and hail during Storm Dudley to raise funds for the charity.

On BBC Breakfast, Daley said the Red Nose Day mission was “the toughest thing I have ever put my body through”.

Speaking from his family home in Plymouth, Daley said: “I am feeling pretty rough, I am not going to lie.

“I am at my mum’s house, so being looked after, but literally, when I got up to pee in the middle of the night, my husband actually had to carry me and help me because I can’t really walk.

“It’s honestly the hardest thing that I have ever put my body through, with all of the Olympic training that I have done, my diving lasts 1.6 seconds per dive, I have never done any kind of endurance training.

“When they discussed what the challenge would be, I had no concept of how long it would take.

Comic Relief 2022
Tom Daley runs through Dartmoor National Park (Jordan Mansfield/Comic Relief/PA)

“Day three was one of the toughest days, with a 15-and-a-half-hour cycle. The inclines were just horrific, and the wind – 40mph headwind with Storm Dudley – and I got to a point where the incline got so steep that I fell off my bike.

“After doing all of that and feeling so extremely exhausted, I then had to run home and do an ultra-marathon on the last day, so last night I was very glad to cross that finish line.

“I couldn’t actually believe that I had done it. I think back to when I first started and I think I have just realised how far Plymouth is from London – on the train you don’t think about it, you’re there having your tea or coffee and snacks, but my goodness…”

The Olympian was cheered on by hundreds of supporters, family and friends during his mission, which he described as “really incredible”.

Daley added: “If I set my mind on a goal to achieve, I will go no matter what. I probably would have gone until physically someone would have had to carry me.

“That’s what I have learned over 20 years of being a diver – I go and go and go until I won a gold medal when lots of people thought it might not have been possible.”

He embarked on the first leg of his journey at 7am on Monday, when he left the Aquatics Centre in Stratford, east London, for a six-mile row down the River Thames to Tower Pier, during which he capsized.

After completing the rowing section, Daley completed a 60-mile cycle from Tower Bridge to the Redgrave Pinsent Rowing Lake in Reading, Berkshire.

He was then thrown into the deep end on the second day with a 1,600m open water swim in the lake, as well as clocking up around 60 more miles on the bike.

On the third day Daley cycled 130 miles, climbing more than 3,000ft from Southampton to Bovey Castle in Dartmoor National Park.

Comic Relief 2022
Olympic diver Tom Daley rides his bike through Winchester during day two of his Comic Relief challenge (Andrew Matthews/PA)

On the final day, he took on an ultramarathon run of 30 miles from Bovey Castle, where he got married to film director Dustin Black five years ago.

– Daley’s journey and all the action has been filmed for a special one-hour documentary which is due to air on BBC One and iPlayer in March.

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access