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Wednesday 22 January 2014

Row2Recovery finished 3rd in epic Atlantic Crossing Challenge

Posted by: Help For Heroes | Categories: General

Help for Heroes is delighted to announce that the Row2Recovery team has finished their epic journey of 3000 miles across the Atlantic, and have come third in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

After 7 weeks on the water and a gruelling 3000 mile row, the Row2Recovery lads (complete with beards) landed safely in Antigua last night around 11pm. The team is raising money for Help for Heroes and is supported by the Endeavour Fund. 

The Row2Recovery team of two injured and two able bodied members of the UK Armed Forces has finished second in the fours class and third overall in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. Trooper Cayle Royce and Corporal Scott Blaney, both of whom suffered life-altering injuries whilst on duty in Afghanistan, alongside Captain James Kayll and Captain Mark Jenkins, completed the grueling 3000 mile row in 48 days 9 hours 13 mins.  

Trooper Cayle Royce was injured in May 2012 whilst serving with the Light Dragoons in Afghanistan after he stepped on an explosive device. This resulted in the amputation of both legs above the knee, facial scarring, multiple amputations to the fingers of his left hand and neck trauma. A keen outdoorsman and traveler before the injury, Royce rowed to prove what can be achieved despite sustaining life-changing injuries.

Scott Blaney suffered an above the knee amputation and soft tissue injuries from a bomb whilst conducting operations in Afghanistan in 2007 with the Grenadier Guards. He comments:"This row has been a huge challenge and a great personal achievement but for me the greatest achievement is doing something to help the wounded community". 

On the approach to Antigua, the team received a message of support from General Peter Wall, the Chief of the General Staff and head of the Army: “This is the most stunning example of courage, grit and determination that the Army has seen for a long time.”

Row2Recovery faced severe conditions during the crossing, including a capsize and man overboard in a severe storm during which the team batted 40ft waves.  The team rowed in 2 hour shifts and survived on freeze dried food and ration packs. 

Talisker Brand Manager Sophie Brookes comments: "Row2Recovery has achieved the extraordinary in completing Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge in 3rd position overall and shown there is life beyond injury.  The weather has been particularly treacherous for our teams this year, with a severe storm hitting the fleet early on in the challenge and really reflects the power and unpredictability of the conditions at Talisker on the rugged Isle of Skye.  The Row2Recovery team has shown incredible physical strength and fortitude since day one and we would like to congratulate them on their phenomenal achievement on behalf of everyone at Talisker.”

The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge saw 16 teams from around the world start the race on 4 December 2013 from La Gomera in the Canary Islands. With two teams airlifted to safety following capsizes and one team rescued by a passing Bulk-carrier ship, only 10 teams remain in the world’s toughest rowing race.  

If you are inspired by the amazing Row2Recovery team please show your support by donating here!

Please also follow the Row2Recovery lads (and their beards) on Facebook and Twitter.