Andy Murray’s brother-in-law has claimed to have become the youngest person to reach the South Pole solo.
Lieutenant Scott Sears, of the First Battalion Royal Gurkha Rifles, completed the 702-mile trek to the underside of the globe in 38 days, beating his hopes of completing the journey in between 40 to 50 days.
By successfully navigating the route unassisted and unsupported, the 27-year-old, who lives in Shoreditch, London, beat the record by two years.
Lt Sears, whose older sister Kim married double Wimbledon champion Murray in 2015, arrived at the South Pole in time for Christmas Day after “hitting the wall” the day before with 38km to go.
Judy Murray congratulated him saying: “Well done Scott Sears – (brother of Andy’s wife Kim) youngest person to reach the South Pole on a solo mission. Got there on Christmas Day……”
In a blog post on Boxing Day, he posted a picture of himself at the pole and said: “Merry Christmas from the South Pole. Absolutely chuffed to pieces.”
Referring to the sledge which held his tent and rations as Bessie, he added: “After 38 days, Bessie and I have made it the pole and officially broken the world record as the youngest person ever to have reached the south pole solo, unsupported and unassisted.
“‘Solo’ is incredibly misleading in regards to the people behind this expedition. Absolutely could not have done this without the help of my co-presenting sponsors The Shackleton Company and Juice Plus. Both have been instrumental in equipping and preparing me for this expedition.”
On the penultimate day, Lt Sears said only snacks and music on his iPod kept him going after he found it hard to go on.
He wrote: “I couldn’t have asked for better weather but well and truly hit a wall midway through the day. I wanted to make sure I was under 30km from the pole for a good finish tomorrow. At 38km left to go I hit the wall, I’ve never experienced anything like it, I would take a couple of steps and just stop, everything was just saying ‘no more, not one more step’.
Andy Murray’s wife Kim Sears with her brother Scott (Steve Parsons/PA)
“I’m not sure what is more surreal, the fact I’m so close to finally reaching the pole or that the shortbread and pepperamis I bought from Asda in Shoreditch are still acceptable to eat after opening them at the start of November!”
Lt Sears has raised more than £33,500, above his original £25,000 target, for the Gurkha Welfare Trust to help rebuild schools in Gorkha, Nepal, destroyed in the earthquake of April 2015.
His fundraising page can be found at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/scottsears.
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