Martley woman's Atlantic challenge hit by bad weather

Malvern Gazette: Atlantic challenge hit by bad weather Atlantic challenge hit by bad weather

A GROUP of RAF servicemen and women have suffered set-back at the start of their bid to row across the Atlantic.

Atlantic Forces, led by Skipper Sergeant Jane McIntosh, aged 34, from Martley, near Worcester, are taking part in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, rowing around 3,000 miles from the Canary Islands to Antigua.

The team who are all based at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire, and their 15 rivals were due to begin their feat today but the start of the race has been delayed until Wednesday due to bad weather.

They are raising money for the RAF Benevolent Fund, Alzheimer's Society and Action for Children and will be rowing in memory of Sgt McIntosh's father, who died two years ago after a long battle with dementia.

The boat Clear Run is named after the boat he used to take her sailing in, and the boat number 106 is the same they used to use.

"My dad introduced me to sailing at a young age and instilled in me a love of the sea,” said Sgt McIntosh, an air loadmaster on 216 Squadron.

"He would think this was amazing.

"I planted a tree in his honour in a burial wood and we've got a picture of the horse chestnut tree in the boat."

Between them, the four have more than 30 years of military experience supporting operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.

The run-up to the challenge has been difficult with the team’s duties meaning that they have only spent three days together. They have contributed their own money to buy their boat, and their plan of having it taken to the Canary Islands by an RAF Hercules fell through when it was diverted to the Philippines.

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