King's Runners-Up in Annual Pringle Trophy Challenge
This weekend nine of our pupils from our Royal Marines CCF Section competed against nineteen other schools from around the country in the annual military skills and leadership competition, The Sir Steuart Pringle Trophy.
The team headed down to the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM), near Lympstone on Friday afternoon and on arrival had a chance encounter with Bear Grylls, who spoke to the team and wished them the best of luck. After supper and an introductory welcome address by Bear and SAS legend Phil Campion, all teams settled in for the night; it was vital they rested well before a 5am alarm call.
On a very rainy first day of the event our team were tested in eight different military disciplines including Map Reading, First Aid, Drill and Observation.
Day two saw the most nail-biting and dramatic finale ever as our team clocked up a sub 22-minute Endurance Course, the fastest yet by a King's team. A more gutsy and determined performance had never been seen.
Given the extent of talent on this national stage it is almost always decided by very slight margins and this year was no exception as our team finished second, just pipped to the post by our newly-established main rivals, Shrewsbury School. Due to an incredibly spirited application of leadership and quick decision-making, our team also won the Break Contact trophy.
Preparation for this weekend was not a simple undertaking. The King's team had trained extremely hard for a number of weeks and this included early mornings, late evenings and weekends. They should be rightly proud – for their long investment in the training beforehand, of course their achievement and finally by the way they carried themselves as ambassadors of our school.
Our Contingent Commander and Head of the RM Section, Major Steve King said: "King's have a long history of success in this event. While we were not overall winners this year, I can honestly say that I have never seen such a tenacious display of true grit and courage. We are all so very proud of their achievement."
The team compromised: Rob Coombs, Oliver Biggs, Hattie Fox, Harry Dray, Max Mejzner, Milo Blakey, Alistair Ramsden, Sam Cobb and Joss Chippendale.