Charity trek to South Pole starts final push

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Prince Harry’s race to the South Pole may have been suspended for safety reasons but the group are more determined than ever to make it to the end together and set off on the last leg yesterday.

Harry had started off on the gruelling charity trek with a team of injured British servicemen and women against groups from the US and the Commonwealth in an expedition organised by the charity Walking With The Wounded.

Ed Parker, the expedition director, said yesterday he had taken the decision to suspend the race to the Pole, but was determined that everyone would make it to the South Pole as one group.

On the charity’s website, he said: “We have had a tricky couple of days. The weather remains good but the terrain is very difficult, far harder than we were anticipating and because of various factors, I have decided to suspend the race.

“The reasons for this are entirely safety based. I am looking at the three teams. They are going really well but people are beginning to get very, very tired.

“With our doctor here, who I am in constant contact with, we just feel we are beginning to push people a little too hard, so I have suspended the race.”

The charity’s website said this was “certainly not the end” for the challenge, but added that steps had been put into place to ensure that all of those involved are kept safe.

The final leg of the challenge began from the team’s second allotted checkpoint, 112km (70 miles) from the South Pole.