The Peking to Paris Motor Challenge 2007
May 27 - June 30 2007
This was not what was expected.
This was not what was expected. With so many missing and four crews considered well off the intended course, the Organisation were forced to back track and send search parties, returning up the route.
Within hours, all were accounted for, but, this meant a change to the plans for the day and we now had a slightly more relaxed schedule of a touring-day to Ulaan Bataar. It meant 250 kilometres of stony rutted desert track before finding good quality tarmac which swept us into Mongolia's capital city.... today has been under bright blue skies, and the final 200 kms of tarmac a welcome respite from the challenge of the previous two days.
A chance to draw breath and get the washing into the laundry as tomorrow is a rest day. On the way into town, we passed a long row of shanty-style tin shacks that looked every bit like Motor City, with tyres and other automobilia racked up in front of small shops... they can look forward to plenty of custom in the next 24 hours.
The 1903 Mercedes of Tim Scott that has been such an amazing performer - on long hills it can outdrag any of the Organisation's modern 4x4s - is coming into town on the back of a truck, and we have received a call from Nigel Challis, Land Rover driver who tackled the Peking to Paris in the same vehicle ten years ago, also requiring assistance from a local truck.
Alberto Hodari is retiring having been totally lost many kilometres off course, requiring the rescue of a search party. Francesco Cirimina, and Roberto and Rita Chiodi, were pulled from the some soft sand after becoming stuck on an alternate track close to the rally route - all part of yet another eventful day on the Peking to Paris.
The rest-day tomorrow is certainly well deserved.