Donations to assist injured troops recover through Karting with Kartforce: May 2015, June 2016 and October 2016
The aim of Kartforce is to provide injured troops with memorable, adrenalin packed experiences and the opportunity to enjoy racing and competing; something some thought would be beyond them for ever. The values of challenge and experience are right in tune with the Trust's objectives. DDMT was delighted to make a donation to enable more teams to enter the British 24 in August 2016 as it had in 2015. You might just spot the Trust logo on the bonnet of Kart 73 in the photo below.
The charity was set-up by Dave Player, an Ex-Royal Engineer and wheelchair user from a spinal injury. The drivers have so many different injuries, including missing fingers and thumbs, that KartForce had to design a new set of hand controls allowing full performance from the karts and enabling the drivers to race on a totally level playing field in mainstream races.
The British 24 is the UK's most demanding kart race. The teams did us proud. Martyn Compton (Household Cavalry and Kartforce Ambassador at the time) and Danny Holland (Welsh Guards) sent a special message of thanks. Dave wrote: "It meant a lot to them that a fallen guardsman had made it possible for them to take part in this race"
At the end of 2015 we received an update from Kartforce. Their clinical study highlighted the benefits of competitive sport on injured troops. The lads attracted to Kartforce are thrill seekers; those that like to push themselves to extremes and thrive on adrenaline rushes.
The key factor for lads with PTSD is knowing when their next event is so they have a challenge to look forward to. One particular lad who tried to back out at the last moment was persuaded to change his mind. For years he had had terrible trouble sleeping as he was blown up by a grenade whilst he slept. After his first intro session of Kartracing he went home, wouldn't stop talking to his wife, fell asleep at 21.00 and woke up at 10.00 the next morning. The best sleep he had had in years. There are many similar examples.
More Kartforce events are planned, building on their successes both in health and competitive terms (two of the Team Endurance Car Racing Kartforce competitors now hold FIA International Race Licences - one being the only double amputee Brit to have this licence). The DDMT wishes nothing but the best for the Kartforce guys. Please follow the links to their own website which tells more about them than we can do in this space.
We would love to hear from you if you know of any soldier (whether current or past), family member or any project that might benefit from our help.