THE famous rock of Gibraltar was the stunning backdrop as a new Type-45 Destroyer sailed towards the Middle East.
The newly-deployed HMS Dragon arrived in stormy conditions.
But the inclement weather soon cleared, allowing the ship’s company the opportunity to engage the sovereignty’s residents in a spot of sport.
The ship fielded rugby, football and netball teams against Gibraltar and came out on top in rugby, but went down in football and netball.
The 22-hour stopover also allowed some of Dragon’s early risers the opportunity to take part in the legendary ‘Rock Run’.
Almost a quarter of the ship’s company got up early to race to the top of the Rock.
But once there, it was a dash back down again to ensure that all were onboard when she sailed two hours later.
After HMS Dragon slipped her lines her Lynx helicopter took her for a ‘sovereignty fly past’ to thank the people of Gibraltar for their hospitality.
HMS Dragon is the fourth of the Royal Navy’s six new Type 45s.
Built by BAE Systems on the Clyde, she made her first entry into her home port of Portsmouth in 2011 and was commissioned into the Navy’s fleet in April last year.
Her job in the Middle East will be to help prevent maritime terrorism, counter piracy, hunt drug runners and deter human trafficking.