A buffer zone isn’t a usual place for a relay race, but 7 Regiment Royal Logistics Corps scaled part of the UN controlled zone in Cyprus, all in the name of charity.
As 7 Regiment RLC comes to the end of their six month UN peacekeeping tour in Cyprus, three teams went head-to-head at dawn to raise money for children either side of the island.
The race weaved through 30 exhausting kilometers of the zone which OP TOSCA is responsible for.
Captain Jake Wills, the event organiser said:
“It’s good to focus them back on to what we are doing and why we are here, because bringing unity to the island is one of the reasons the UN is here. Hence giving to charities on both sides of the island, to help both sides make a better life.”
The teams competing were the Officers and Seniors mess (a combined team), MFR and the support company from 7 Regiment RLC. All were volunteered by their Sergeant majors and supported with sponsorships from their respective teams.
Race conditions were tough, with little shade and harsh terrain. The second leg of the race saw teams ride along the old road that once connected Nicosia with Famagusta. Lieutenant Nathan Brown, 7 Reg RLC described the race as, ‘absolute carnage’.
The race not only benefited SOS Children’s Village in the North and the Make A Wish Foundation in the South, but it also served as motivator for the regiment as their time on OP TOSCA winds down.
Captain Jake Wills explained:
“It’s really important to do something to actually break up the tour and keep them motivated, especially as you get to the last couple of months where someone of them might take their eye off what they are doing and start looking to the horizon.