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Last Updated: Wednesday, 15 February 2006, 16:07 GMT
Solo oarswoman's Valentine date
Roz Savage and HMS Southampton
HMS Southampton was on its way back from the Caribbean
A British oarswoman taking part in a Transatlantic rowing race was paid a surprise Valentine visit by the crew of a Royal Navy warship in mid-ocean.

HMS Southampton paused on its return journey to its home port of Portsmouth, Hampshire, to present Roz Savage, 37, from London, with a Valentine's card.

The 37-year-old is the only solo female taking part in the 2,550-mile Atlantic Rowing Race in her boat Sedna Solo.

She is going from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua.

On Tuesday, the ship paused 750 miles east of Antigua to allow the crew to pass on their support to Ms Savage.

HMS Southampton's second in command, Lieutenant Commander Ben Carroll, handed over a Valentine's card and other messages which had been sent to the ship by email.

He said: "The race rules do not allow us to provide any support to her but no one can complain about a Valentine card.

Roz Savage and crew of HMS Southampton
The crew of HMS Southampton gave Ms Savage a Valentine's card

"We did offer her the captain's bath and some Radox, which she seemed quite tempted by but had to turn down."

Leading seaman Danny Nichol, HMS Southampton's coxswain, added: "Roz appeared in good heart, even though she's got another month to go.

"We all wish her the best of luck - she's very brave."

The warship is on its way back from a six-month deployment to West Africa, the Falkland Islands and most recently the Caribbean, where the ship was involved a record 3.5 tonne cocaine drug bust.


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