Just had an article about the trip published in the Bath Impact click on the image to read the full story.
Three mechanical engineering students are part of a team of four preparing to take on a 10,000 mile charity rally from London to Mongolia, in a 20 year old Limousine!
Steven Brace, Oliver Skittery, Jack Chartres and Dominic Falcão have signed up for the Mongol Rally 2014 to raise money for their chosen charity Médecins Sans Frontières and for the official rally charity Cool Earth. The Rally travels through Europe, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Russia crossing the Gobi desert on the way.
Médecins Sans Frontières are a humanitarian charity that provides medical assistance to countries affected by armed conflict, natural disasters and poor healthcare systems. “We’ve chosen to support MSF because the majority of the funds raised go directly to running their essential support programs.” Steven explained.
Typically cars in the rally are required to have an engine size of 1 litre or less. However, when the group found a bargain 2nd hand limo on eBay, they could not resist the offer. “We contacted the rally organisers to see if an exception could be made, and when they heard we wanted to use a limo they were all for it”.
When Jack told his parents about the rally they weren’t completely on board. Two days after telling them he received a 6 page hand-written letter from his mother pleading him not to take part. One of her many concerns was that Jack, who measures in at 6 foot 5 inches long, “would be too cramped”. This was before Jack had informed them that he had purchased a limousine. Jack exclaimed, “This 20 foot executive vehicle will be perfect for my long legs and my mum’s nerves.”
Aside from parental concern, the team have other hurdles to overcome. Steven, who suffers from chronic car sickness, hopes that he will be able to obtain a driving licence in time for the start of the rally on the 19th of July. Dom, the team’s 4th member, a graduate of PPE from York University was told by his driving instructor that he was the worst student he’d had in 40 years of instructing and would certainly crash within a week of passing his test.
Insurance has proven to be a major hurdle. Initially the boys found that after contacting countless insurance brokers the same question came up every time. “Why do three twenty-two year old students need insurance on a limousine?” Unfortunately, “More seats and extra legroom” was not the answer they were looking for. They were finally successful when they found a specialist broker that covers convicted and banned drivers.
When asked why they chose a limo they replied “With one of the longest continuous histories in the motor industry, the Rover marque has always had a reputation for luxury without extravagance and style without ostentation. It has maintained this status with the Rover 827 limousine which includes exclusively full-grain leather interiors and fully electric wing mirrors. The Rover 827’s top of class air conditioning system makes it the only practical choice for crossing the Gobi desert. This paired with state of the art soft-air suspension will allow a smooth journey across potholes, river crossings and arid desert planes.”
The team are hoping to raise £2,500 for their chosen charities; they have all signed up for the Bath half marathon on the 3rd of March and are planning other fund raising events in the near future.
To follow their progress, and donate, go to www.mongolrallylimoservice.co.uk.