Sir Chay on the mend after freak holiday fall

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LEGENDARY yachtsman Sir Chay Blyth is recovering in hospital after suffering a badly broken leg whilst on a boat in Spain.

The famous Hawick man and rower had just reached the end of a holiday on a friend’s yacht at Sant Carles de la Ràpita in Catalonia last Thursday, when he lost his footing on the deck and fractured his thigh bone.

His daughter Samantha Blyth, told the Hawick News: “We had had a great holiday and were all packed up and ready to leave for the airport for an early morning flight, when my Dad slipped on morning dew on the deck and broke his femur.”

The 71-year old had endured a serious break and due to the family wanting him to undergo treatment in this country, they organised for him to be brought home by air ambulance, and he was taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary where surgeons operated on Tuesday.

Samantha went on: “It was apparently a bad break to mend, but everything is fine and Dad is doing really well. He is in great hands and the staff at the Edinburgh Royal have been fantastic.”

Sir Chay, CBE BEM – the first person to sail around the world the ‘wrong way’ and the only living person to have been given the Freedom of the Burgh of Hawick – is said to be in good fettle despite the damage.

And for the adventurer – whom during a talk at Hawick High School last year informed a packed lecture hall that he had sailed round the world three times, round Cape Horn four times, raced across the North Atlantic 11 times, capsized at Cape Horn and spent 19 hours in the water, been run down by a ship, and rescued by the RNLI four times – it is just another injury in a long line of incidents.

His daughter says that he is expected to make a full recovery and should be back up on his feet by the New Year, commenting: “Dad has broken loads of bones in his body throughout his life, arms and legs the lot, so it’s nothing new.”

And highlighting the Stouslie resident’s famous spirit of determination, Samantha added: “Dad has already said he is still looking forward to supporting the Common-Riding and following the Cornet next year.”