Triple amputee to compete in rally

From BBC News:

A paratrooper who lost both legs and an arm in an explosion in Afghanistan has left his Worcestershire home to compete in the Dakar rally.

Cpl Tom Neathway, based at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire in a civilian role, was injured when a booby trap bomb detonated in 2008.

He has now recovered enough to compete with the Race2Recovery team with other wounded soldiers.

Cpl Neathway said: “Rallying has almost turned into a full-time job.”

He said his team were leaving on 31 December to take part in the race, which starts in Lima, Peru, on 5 January.

The 6,000-mile route travels through Argentina and is due to end in Santiago, Chile, on 19 January.

Cpl Neathway, of 2nd Battalion, the Parachute Regiment, said: “I’ve had to put work on the back foot a bit, we’ve been training once or twice a month and recently got back from two weeks of training in Morocco.

“We’re very lucky as it’s run in a very militaryesque way using maps, a compass and bearings so we’re in our comfort zones in a way.”

He said money raised from the rally by the team would go towards the personnel recovery centre, Tedworth House, in Wiltshire.

Cpl Neathway, who will drive with Capt Anthony Harris, of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, said: “I was never treated there but I’ve seen the facilities and it’s unbelievable – that’s why I want to raise the money.”

He said he hoped the rally would generate “millions” for Tedworth House, while almost £1m had already been raised by Christmas.


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