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Body of Swiss triathlete washes up in Ostend

Ueli Staub's body was found on Friday Keystone Archive

The body of the Swiss triathlete, Ueli Staub, has been found a couple of kilometres off the Ostend coast in the west of Belgium. Staub went missing more than a week ago during an attempt to swim the English Channel.

The 37-year-old athlete, who was Liechtenstein’s national triathlon coach, was only 1.5 kilometres short of the French coast when his escort boat, whose crew included his father, lost sight of him in three-metre high waves.

The French authorities immediately launched a search and rescue operation, but this was called off on Monday morning after they found no trace of him.

Staub, who came from Arnegg near St Gallen, had set off from Dover last Saturday at 5am Swiss time in his bid to swim across 35 kilometres of the English Channel. He had been swimming for around 16 hours when he disappeared.

According to the British-based Channel Swimmers Association, around 60 to 70 people try to swim across the English Channel every year, mainly between July and September when the water is at its least cold.

swissinfo with agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR