‘Four men with three legs taking on one mighty ocean’ – First ever all-amputee team, Row2Recovery, in final third of 3,000 mile Atlantic row

Patrick Gallagher and his team training in La Gomera, Spain

Patrick Gallagher and his team training in La Gomera, Spain - Credit: Archant

The first ever all-amputee team to row an ocean – ‘four men with three legs taking on one mighty ocean’ - are now under 1,000 miles away and just weeks from completing their world record breaking attempt.

Patrick Gallagher and his team

Patrick Gallagher and his team - Credit: Sergeant Rupert Frere RLC

The Row2Recorvery team set off on the 3,000 mile-long Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge – regarded as ‘the world’s toughest row’ - on 20 December.

The team is made up of four injured service men: Cayle Royce, light dragoon lance corporal; Nigel Rogoff, former RAF flight sergeant parachute jump instructor; Lee Spencer, serving royal marine colour sergeant; and former Irish guardsman Paddy Gallagher.

Mr Gallagher, of Parson Drove, said before setting off: “I’m doing it to raise money and awareness for injured serviceman, to motivate those who have not got over their injuries yet.

“I want to let other veterans know that life is not over and you can still achieve the extraordinary.”

The 30-year-old lost his right leg below the knee in a blast in Afghanistan in 2009. He described the injury as an “occupational hazard”.

Currently, the team is entering the third leg of the race in the top ten boats out of a fleet of 26. They are expected to arrive into Antigua in two weeks time.

Most Read

Last week the team endured storms, being locked in their air tight cabin for days at a time during the first 2,000 miles.

Two members of the team were injured due to the grueling shift of two hours on, two hours off, and one member broke his prosthetic leg during the first few weeks of rowing.

However, they remain in the top ten boats to make it to land first and are currently fourth out of nine boats in the ‘fours’ class.

By the time they return home, the team will have been out at sea for between 45 and 55 days, battling unpredictable weather conditions to raise funds for Row2Recovery, The British Limbless Ex-Servicemen’s Association (BLESMA), Help for Heroes and the Endeavour Fund.

The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge sees 26 teams from around the world leave from La Gomera to row 3,000 miles across the ocean to Antigua unaided.

More people have climbed Everest or been to space than they have rowed the Atlantic.

To track the row and donate, visit: www.row2recovery.com or search @Row2Recovery on Twitter.