Rally challenge for injured troops

British soldiers who lost limbs while serving in Afghanistan are preparing to take part in the dangerous Dakar Rally in 2013, which would make them the first disabled team to ever compete in the off-road race.

The team, which will also be the first all-British entry in the race, consists of Corporal Tom Neathway, 27, Lance Bombardier Ben Parkinson, 26, and Sergeant Gavin Harvey, 29, all of whom lost both their legs to improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Afghanistan.

Triple amputee Cpl Neathway, of 2nd Battalion the Parachute Regiment, will co-drive one of the two race cars.

He said: "When you get injured it's not the end of your life, it's just a different route."

The team will drive two specially adapted QT Wildcat off-road race cars made by QT Services at Cornwall.

They have two years to prepare the vehicles and obtain the necessary rallying experience to qualify for the Motor Sport Association licences they will require to compete in the prestigious event.

TheDakar Rally is organised by Project Mobility 4x4, a charity established last year to give injured troops adrenaline-packed motoring experiences through off-road vehicles.

Copyright © Press Association 2011