Reality sets in for Derriford doctors taking on Arctic challenge

Authored by Mary
Posted: Monday, February 17, 2014 - 10:25

Three military junior doctors from Derriford Hospital who will face a challenge of a lifetime tomorrow have told us that the reality of their challenge is finally setting in.

Representing all three of the armed services, Flight Lieutenant Michael Thompson, Surgeon Lieutenant Alex Bamford and Captain George Graham, are now in Lapland and are preparing to take part in the gruelling Arctic Winter Race, Rovaniemi 150.

The challenge will see the trio run/trek across 150km of Northern Finland, pulling all of their necessary kit in a traditional pulka, in aid of a leading UK charity specialising in the care of veterans’ mental health, Combat Stress, which specialises in the care of Veterans’ mental health and is currently supporting more than 5,200 ex-service men and women.

Speaking from Lapland, Flight Lieutenant Michael Thompson, said: “I think the reality of the challenge is finally coming home to us all. In a few minutes we are off for the compulsory equipment and survival briefing and then there will be time for a 'last supper' before setting off in the early hours of tomorrow morning.

“Whilst it is a little 'warmer' than predicted at about -10C, the snow continues to fall and visibility is poor, but the general feeling is one of excitement and optimism. Obviously we've also scouted out where we hope to sink a few celebratory Lappish beers in a few days from now!

“We would like to thank our friends, colleagues and patients at Derriford Hospital for all of the support we've received so far. We are delighted to have raised over £5,000 so far for our charity, Combat Stress. It's certainly not too late to donate, and we continue to be very grateful for any and all donations.”

If you would like to support the trio, donations can be made via their justgiving page: