Channel 4's Edge of Endurance season concludes with Deep Water, the stunning true story of the fateful voyage of an amateur yachtsman who in 1968 entered the most daring nautical challenge ever: the very first solo, non-stop, round-the-world boat race.
Donald Crowhurst was a 36-year-old father of four whose marine electronics business was failing, and who felt compelled to attempt to win the fastest voyage prize. If he failed, Crowhurst faced financial ruin and would lose everything. Ill-prepared and with a leaking boat, he made depressingly slow progress. Then, to the astonishment of the media and his family, Crowhurst started to radio a series of increasingly record-breaking daily distances.
In reality, Crowhurst was slipping further and further behind his stated position, weeks away from where the rest of the world thought he was. He started a second logbook recording his true position, with a list of elaborately calculated false positions on spare sheets.
He decided to simply wait in the Southern Ocean for the other boats to sail around the world and join him again on the return leg. In effect, Crowhurst became trapped by his own lie. A series of remarkable and unforeseen twists of fate meant that his fraudulent journey became an ever-worsening nightmare from which he could not escape.
Using his original 16mm footage and tape recordings, the film reconstructs his extraordinary and fraudulent journey. This is the story of a man driven by desire, desperation and ambition who finally found his powers of endurance stretched beyond their limits.