French swimmer will try to become first person to swim across Pacific Ocean. Ben Lecomte, 51, set off from Japan on Tuesday on his superhuman task of crossing the ocean. It will take him more than six months to complete 9,000-km swim. He will have to swim for eight hours day to reach his target on west coast of the USA. He will also have to face many dangers. There will be sharks, jellyfish, storms, rough seas, and very low water temperatures. He will also have to fight exhaustion and any injuries he picks up along way. However, Mr Lecomte said: "The mental part is much more important than physical. You have to make sure you always think about something positive."
Lecomte has been training for six years to take up this challenge. He has practised every day during that time by swimming in sea. This is to make sure he is in top physical condition. He has also been training his mind. It will be very lonely swim and he needs to be mentally tough. Lecomte said he is doing swim to raise awareness of climate change, effects of plastic rubbish in ocean, and effects of Fukushima nuclear disaster on ocean. Scientists will also study his body to monitor how extreme exercise affects heart. In 1998, Lecomte made first solo trans-Atlantic swim. It took him 73 days to cover 6,400km. When he reached dry land, his first words were, "never again".