The Royal Family

Princess Kate Meets Polar Preet On Royal Visit To Derby

The Princess of Wales cut an elegant figure as she visited a college in Derby alongside Captain Preet Chandi MBE to celebrate the Army officer’s return from her solo expedition across Antarctica.

Kate, 41, was patron of Capt Chandi’s expedition, where she broke the world record for the furthest unsupported solo polar ski expedition in history after covering 922 miles in 70 days and 16 hours. 

Looking typically stylish, the royal mother-of-three opted for a white £69.99, double-breasted blazer from Zara for the engagement. Kate debuted a now favoured red version of the jacket in 2020.

Kate looked effortlessly elegant in the statement jacket, which she teamed with navy trousers and a white top, as well as recycled £120 Veja trainers.

Adding a touch of glitz to her ensemble, the mother-of-three sported a pair of dainty stud earrings, while wearing a smattering of glamorous makeup.

The princess joined students as they took part in some activities which bring to life the expedition and how Capt Chandi prepared for it, including some examples of how she trained and the types of food she consumed.

Removing her jacket, Kate tried her hand at tyre pulling, admitting: ‘I need to do some training.’ 

Finally, Capt Chandi and Kate chatted to a group of Year 11 and Year 13 students about building resilience and mental wellbeing in all aspects of life.

The princess has long been an advocate of the huge impact the outdoors can have on our wellbeing and the life skills it nurtures, such as confidence and resilience. 

She is committed to promoting this to young people, including through her work with organisations such as the Scouts, of which she is joint President. 

Capt Chandi covered 922 miles – 1,485km – in 70 days and 16 hours, breaking the record for the longest solo unsupported and unassisted expedition in Antarctica, according to the British Army.

Capt Chandi, dubbed ‘Polar Preet’, fell short of completing her target of going coast to coast, around 100 miles from where she was picked up.

The 33-year-old said: ‘Mentally, it was tough knowing I didn’t have enough time to make the crossing, but the expedition was about pushing my boundaries and inspiring others to do the same, so how could I not continue?

‘I’m disappointed I ran out of time to make the crossing of Antarctica, but I did everything I could. I didn’t take a day off and pushed as hard as possible every day. I’m proud that I kept going when it was tough and I thought I couldn’t do any more.’

Capt Chandi skied for between 13 and 15 hours per day with as little as five hours’ sleep at times.


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