The Peking to Paris Motor Challenge 2007
May 27 - June 30 2007
Thousands of Spectators
We have arrived in Reims, Henriot vintage champagne house first of all welcomed us by closing a street, parking up all the cars in Le Mans chevron formation, and watching all the crews down several glasses, and then roll into the town centre where the pedestrian precinct was closed off for our exclusive parking area. The place is packed with thousands of spectators.
Most of us are here, but the biggest surprise is the non-appearance of Car One, David and Karen Ayre, as one competitor reports receiving a very brief call from the Ayres to say they have been taken in by the traffic police and are being held at Metz….. this is terrible news which we are unable to verify the exact cause although we are assured there has been no accident or injury.
We await further news, rather anxiously and trust that it will be a misunderstanding of the demands of driving a 100-year-old car through modern traffic. The run to Paris is tomorrow, and every crew has made great efforts to be part of it.
Car 82, the Buick of John Refaul and Philip Lunnon arrived into the town centre in a big cloud of blue smoke, the engine is an eight cylinder now running on six, due to piston-ring failure but the crew is confident of getting into Paris tomorrow.
Jan Vorbril arrived late… the solo driver who has driven here in a remarkable single-handed effort confessed he was so tired he filled the petrol tank with diesel. The engine smokes a bit more but continues to struggle onwards.
Chateau Henriot and the Mayor of Reims are hosting a reception for all crews here tonight… the celebrations have started a day early.