Key to mountain challenge was teamwork, says Fareham private

Private Marcus Le Crornu
Private Marcus Le Crornu
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A FAREHAM army private has taken part in a gruelling physical challenge in the Black Mountains in Wales.

Private Marcus Le Cornu, 24, undertook the Exercise Cambrian Patrol challenge with a team of seven others, competing against patrols from armies around the world.

Pte Le Cornu and his team were required to cover more than 50km carrying an average of 30kg in less than two days, and the exercise took place over nine days.

Pte Le Cornu said training for the challenge was difficult, but the key to doing well was teamwork.

Speaking before the challenge, he said: ‘We’ve used Salisbury Plain to train for about three weeks but have had about six weeks together as a team.

‘It’s all about sticking together and keeping tight.

‘The aim is to pick up as many points as possible and push on to the end.

‘Who knows what we can achieve after that?’

Pte Le Cornu serves with the 1st Battalion The Princess of Wales’ Royal Regiment, and has previously completed a tour of Afghanistan. He said: ‘I’ve been with the regiment for four years, straight out of college.

‘Our section commander has completed this exercise before and we’ve made sure we’ve put the preparation in beforehand.’

The soldiers had to navigate through the mountains without access to boats and first aid.

Patrol commanders were given a set of orders based on a specific scenario and were tasked to give a briefing to members of their patrol before they were taken to a number of drop-off points in the hills.

Patrols from Pakistan and New Zealand won the challenge.

Other teams taking part came from countries including Poland, the Czech Republic, France, Denmark, Australia, Holland, Ireland, India, Canada, Chile, Brazil, Oman, the USA, Switzerland, Lithuania, Nepal and Georgia.

The challenge has been taking place since 1959. To contact the army for more information call 01874 613280.