“Ross and I were delighted to make it to Ulan Bator. Whatever we expected when we left London on 18 July, the whole trip was a challenge in all sorts of ways and there were at least five occasions when I thought our attempt had failed. During the final week, driving across western Mongolia in a clapped-out car was a test of mental and physical endurance as much as anything. By the end we really felt we’d earned all your generous sponsorship!
The car sounded more like a biplane by the time it rolled – and we very nearly had to push it – over the finishing line at 5pm on 15 August in downtown Ulan Bator – 8,031 miles from my house in London. We’d lost 5 litres of oil in 20 hours through a gearbox held together with chewing-gum, the clutch was wearing out, the fuel pump wired together, and the exhaust pipe missing. But what would be considered a write-off in the UK is an asset in Mongolia. We’re assured that the car will be overhauled and will run for many years to come to help public services in Mongolia – perhaps as an ambulance in one of the far-flung aimags (districts).
All of the other teams we met encountered problems: one team was running with vodka for break fluid by the end, and another skoda team wrecked their gear box as we did, and limped the final 1200km in only 3rd and 5th gears (given the roads I just don’t know how they managed that). Many teams didn’t make it to the finish line at all.
Ross and Ian have to date raised over £1,408.97 for the David Scourse Memorial Fund at Epilepsy Research UK.