The 60th Field Regiment returned to Egypt in September 1941. Re-equipped with brand-new 25-pounder guns, they were now part of the 7th Support Group of the 7th Armoured Division of the 8th Army--the famous "Desert Rats".
In November 1941, the regiment crossed through the frontier wire separating Egypt from Libya to take part in "Operation Crusader".
The British had at last got more tanks, guns and men than the Germans, and the idea behind Operation Crusader was to smash the Afrika Korps once and for all. Over 600 tanks in 30 Corps would crush Rommel's two Panzer Divisions. Once this had been done the 8th Army would go on to relieve the port of Tobruk, which had been under siege for months.
On the first day, Tuesday, the whole of 30 Corps made good progress in the desert. There was just one snag--the Afrika Korps was nowhere to be seen! In fact, Rommel was gathering his forces together, for he was planning to launch an assault on Tobruk THAT WEEKEND! Both the British and the German armies were heading for the same place…
As the Germans had inconveniently not turned up, it was decided to split the 7th Armoured Division. The 22nd Armoured Brigade was sent towards the west to deal with some Italians, whilst the 7th Armoured Brigade (three tank regiments), closely followed by the 7th Support Group, made good progress in the north and were now only a few miles from beleaguered Tobruk at a place in the desert called Sidi Rezegh. The whole point of Operation Crusader was to overwhelm Rommel's two Panzer Divisions by sheer weight of numbers. Yet within 24 hours, 30 Corps was scattered all over the desert. It was an incredible decision.