A four-man team of ex-military and serving amputees who are undertaking a gruelling 3,000-mile row for charity have received a surprise call of support from Prince Harry.
The crew, who had previously been described as “hoofing individuals” (slang for ‘amazing’, as many ex-forces personnel will already know) by Hollywood actor Tom Hardy, received the call by satellite phone. The prince congratulated them on their incredible effort so far and wished them luck for the rest of their journey.
They tweeted that they were: “An excited boat of
@leglessrowers this morning after a surprise phone call from Prince Harry to the team!”
The team, rowing on behalf of the Row2Recovery charity, set out on the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge – known as the world’s toughest rowing race – on December 15. The challenge started at La Gomera in the Canary Islands and will take the brave competitors 3,000 miles across the Atlantic to finish in Antigua. Competitors will burn off an average of 8,000 calories daily and are expected to lose about a fifth of their body weight over the course of the race.
This is the first time a crew consisting entirely of amputees has taken part in the challenge. The crew is being led by serving Light Dragoon Lance Corporal Cayle Royce, MBE, who underwent a double amputation and lost the fingers on his left hand following an IED blast in Helmand, Afghanistan. He took part in the 2013/2014 race, his team coming third overall.
The team is completed by former Irish Guardsman Paddy Gallagher, former RAF Flight Sergeant Parachute Jump Instructor Nigel Rogoff and serving Royal Marine Colour Sergeant Lee Spencer. Between them they are raising money for a number of ex-Forces charities including Blesma, the Endeavour Fund, Help for Heroes and Row2Recovery itself.