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Officer Cadets run Dubai Half Marathon

Officer Cadets run Dubai Half Marathon
7 November 2019
Officer Cadets from Britannia Royal Naval College were among the 9,000 competitors that took part in the first Mai Dubai half marathon.

The team of 14 Cadets arrived in Dubai for a port visit on board HMS Defender.  They joined the Type 45 defender on patrol at the end of September, for their initial sea time, designed to give them a basic understanding of life at sea.

Starting around 6.30 am to avoid the intense heat, the marathon consisted of four laps around the financial district.  Competitors had the choice of running the half marathon or shorter 5 or 10 km distances

Officer Cadet Kieron Stewart said:  “Despite the early start, a good portion of the course was not in shade and it felt hot. Fortunately, there were plenty of water stops, although they were mostly used to cool ourselves rather than drink. By the time we started our third lap, the runners from the Ship’s Company who ran the shorter races were cheering us on as we passed through the start/finish point. The whole team completed the half. Most of us came in around the two-hour mark.”

HMS Defender left Portsmouth Naval Base at the end of August to conduct maritime security patrols. 

Initial sea time is an important part of the Officer Cadet’s training. During their time onboard the Cadets live alongside the junior ratings, the men and women they will be expected to lead as Officers in the future.  They also have opportunity to see how the various departments on board the ship work together to achieve operational capability. 

While this group of Cadets were embarked on HMS Defender, another group spent time on board the Royal Navy’s new Aircraft Carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth, after a short period on board another new ship, HMS Medway, a River class offshore patrol vessel. 

Overall the run was challenging but rewarding; it was a good way to see some of the city.

Officer Cadet Kieron Stewart

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