Row2Recovery "Team Trident" get ready to launch
When you’re tucking into your Christmas dinner spare a thought for Jordan Beecher and Jon Armstrong. They’ll be in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, rowing non-stop.
A friendship that was forged years ago during a freezing military exercise on Salisbury Plain has led two former teenage Paratroopers to take on a daunting 3,000-mile row across the Atlantic Ocean. A decade after that meeting, Jordan Beecher and Jon Armstrong are about to plunge their oars into an epic challenge that will see them brave fearsome seas for more than 40 days.
Jon now a Captain in the Royal Gurkha Rifles, and Jordan a former Lance Corporal in the Parachute Regiment who lost his left leg below the knee to an IED in Afghanistan, were given a rousing send off at a fundraising evening held at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in late November.
The duo, who are part of a 28-boat field that set off from the Canary Islands on 10 December bound for Antigua, hope to raise £100,000 for Blesma, the Royal Gurkha Rifles Trust and Dreamflight charities as a result of their epic expedition.
Racing as Team Trident under the Row2Recovery banner, they will face mountainous waves, winds of up to 50 knots, 40°C temperatures, and gruelling physical and mental shifts to power their seven-metre long boat across the Atlantic for more than a month.
It is not going to be an easy task. There will be days when one of us doesn’t want to play the game, and will want to get out of the boat and walk home!” said Blesma Member Jordan, from St. Albans. “But obviously we know that is not an option and we’ll definitely have each other’s backs when we each need help.”
Jordan, who was on his third tour of Afghanistan on 21 October 2012 when he was injured, has already won four Gold medals at the Invictus Games and become a British Indoor Rowing champion since his injury.
Blesma Chief Executive Barry Le Grys told the audience at the fundraising event at Sandhurst’s Indian Army Memorial Room at Old College that the Association has been supporting war veterans for almost a century. “I dare say that in the 1920s it was dominoes, but now it is adventurers trying to row the Atlantic,” said Barry. “But whatever it is, the principle of the Association remains the same and that is of trying to help one another. We are pleased to launch Jon and Jordan on their endeavour. We will always support our Members, whether it is rowing the Atlantic or regaining the mobility to play with their children.”
At the fundraising event Jon, 30, said: “The charities that are supporting us share the same values – mostly that through friendship we can overcome the challenges life puts in our way. We’d like to thank Blesma, who have been so supportive over the last 18 months, and it is due to them that we are in the position to launch this endeavour.”
Row2Recovery are hoping to raise 100k and are only at 2% of their target.
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