Friday 23 February 2018

Soldiers finish marathon challenge

A soldier dismounts from the new 'Jackal 2' high mobility vehicle
A soldier dismounts from the new 'Jackal 2' high mobility vehicle

A group of soldiers have completed a marathon with a difference after pulling five Army vehicles 26.2 miles in the searing heat of Afghanistan.

The 24-strong contingent, from the Royal Logistic Corps (RLC) Stores Troop, part of 1 Close Support Battalion Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineers, completed the 14-hour challenge around a course in Camp Bastion.

They shifted a variety of military vehicles, ranging from the four-ton Vixen, to the nine-ton Jackal and Panther, the 14-ton Husky and the 30-ton Mastiff.

The troops completed the marathon this morning, braving temperatures of more than 35C (95F), to raise more than £2,000 for the British Limbless Ex-Service Men's Association and St Dunstan's, who provide help for blind ex-service personnel.

Captain Steve Metcalfe, Officer Commanding RLC Stores Troop, said: "I wanted to make the event a real challenge and I think we did that, pulling the Mastiff felt like a case of the irresistible force against the immovable object.

"Doing the challenge on behalf of two such great charities, the way I looked at it was trading 15 hours of pain for me for what could be a lifetime of comfort for an injured serviceman."

Warrant Officer Class 1 Lee Grunshaw, 38, said: "It was extremely hard, for a good cause and, no, before you ask, I won't be doing it again."

Lance Corporal Sheldon Jacob, 27, added: "This was the hardest part of the last six months - it was non-stop effort all the way around.

"When we were first told of the challenge it seemed impossible and the sense of achievement we feel now reflects that."

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