A MAN who has already reached the North Pole has set his sights on racing to the South Pole later this year.
On the anniversary of the ill-fated race between Norwegian Roald Amundsen and Brit Robert Scott to be the first to reach the South Pole, Julian Evans will take on the 440-mile race the adventurers set out to complete 100 years ago.
He will travel on the same route the famous explorers embarked upon in 1911, racing against four other teams to be the first to reach the Pole.
Mr Evans, who lives with his wife Vicky in Harborough, will be taking part in the Scott Amundsen Centenary Race in December, setting off from the Russian Novo polar base.
The race will see him negotiating crevasses, snow bridges and taking on extreme weather conditions including temperatures as low as -40C.
There will also be snowstorms and katabatic winds, which can rise to 80mph.
He said: “We have to navigate from Novo to the South Pole. We will have our own GPSs, co-ordinates and maps.”
Mr Evans (38) said he began doing endurance challenges after feeling he was a bit long in the tooth for rugby.
As well as climbing Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, Mr Evans has jumped off the Goldeneye dam in Switzerland (following in James Bond’s footsteps), run across the Sahara desert in the Marathon des Sables, and cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats.
He reached the North Pole in 2009 and was determined to take on the South. He hopes one day to climb Everest.
The race to the South Pole will see him and his team covering 700km and will take around six weeks to complete.
“I have to get up at five in the morning to train and you need to do that for a year before. Then three to four weeks beforehand it is advisable to start putting on weight as you can burn between 7,000 and 9,000 calories a day.”
Due to the risk of frostbite, competitors are unable to talk during the day while they are pulling sleighs with their supplies.
He was interviewed for his suitability for the race and is yet to meet the team-mates who he will be joining.
“You’re not able to speak for seven or eight hours. You stop every hour-and-a-half to check you haven’t got any frostbite but until you get back in the tent you’re very isolated.”
In the past Mr Evans has raised thousands of pounds for charities including the Matt Hampson Foundation, Myeloma UK, LandAid, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy and Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research.
He hopes to raise £100,000 through his latest challenge.