Richard Branson set to kitesurf the English Channel

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British tycoon adventurer Richard Branson will attempt to kitesurf across the English Channel with his family on Tuesday in celebration of his 60th birthday.

"Kitesurfing is one of my favourite sports. I absolutely love the amazing rush you get when going at high speeds, in high winds, with the most beautiful kite acting as your only guide," he said in a statement on his website.

"I know that kitesurfing across the Channel will not be quite the same as kitesurfing in the beautiful waters of the Caribbean but I can't think of anything I'd rather do, with my family and friends, to celebrate turning 60!"

Branson, the man behind the Virgin business empire, is no stranger to crazy stunts, having broken the transatlantic speedboat record in 1986, and conducted several failed attempts to traverse the globe in a hot air balloon.

The entrepreneur, who turned 60 last month, said his wife reckoned he was growing more crazy with age.

Branson's children, Holly and Sam, and his nephews will join him on the kite-surfing trip.

They plan to set off from Dungeness on the southern English coast at 1000 GMT and head to the northern French port of Boulogne, for a barbecue three or fours later.

© 2010 AFP

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