Atlantic Challenge: Four men, three legs and 3,000 miles

Updated 1459 GMT (2259 HKT) December 22, 2015
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Left to right: Lee Spencer, 46, Cayle Royce, 29, Nigel Rogoff, 56, and Paddy Gallagher, 30, all lost a limb -- or two -- while serving in the British army. Courtesy Row2Recovery
They will race 28 able-bodied crews to row across the Atlantic ocean in 40-60 days. Ben Duffy/Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge
Team captain Royce is a serving Light Dragoon Lance Corporal, who was third in a mixed team in the 2013-14 race. "At one point we had two separate storms running, making these huge 40-foot swirls. This wave lifted us completely vertically and then broke, throwing us overboard. It was like IED (Improvised Explosive Device) all over again. We laughed about it later," he says.
Courtesy Row2Recovery
"When you lose your limb you have to think about every single detail," Royce says. "Every single thing we're setting out in the boat, we're looking at the easiest way to do it so it's accessible." Ben Duffy/Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge
Gallagher, left, lost his leg in Afghanistan in 2009. Asked what advice he'd give people bogged down with life's problems, the former Irish Guardsman says: "I've got not much empathy. People tend to wallow in a sea of self pity. Just man-up! Life throws stuff at you, but you've just got to take it on the chin and crack on with it." Sergeant Rupert Frere RLC/Army
The team set off from La Gomera in the Canary Islands on 20 December. After a five day delay due to adverse weather conditions, strong winds now behind the rowers have got organisers predicting this could be the quickest Atlantic rowing race to date. Ben Duffy
The crew are from different parts of the UK and had only trained together briefly before arriving in the Canary Islands for the race. Courtesy Andy Bate
"We do thrive in the military on being in a close-knit team environment," says Gallagher, "so getting back into that is something I'm looking forward to." Ben Duffy/Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge
The race departure point in La Gomera. All being well, the team will arrive roughly six weeks later in Antigua in the Caribbean. It is known as the "world's toughest rowing race." Courtesy Row2Recovery
The team set off waving their families and loved ones goodbye. Ben Duffy
The conditions will be "hot, tight and sweaty", with each of the two tiny cabins only just big enough for one man to lie down in. Row2Recovery
In last year's race, the winner of the solo row "Rame Guyane" was Antonio de la Rosa from Spain. De la Rosa rowed the 2,600 miles between Senegal and French Guiana in 64 days and three hours. JODY AMIET/AFP/Getty