Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the first international rally for classics and vintageants – the 1988 Pirelli Classic Marathon – rally organiser Philip Young is set to sample some of the pain he has dished out over the years by driving a 1.0-litre Fiat Panda Twin-Air all the way from Cape Town to London.
The 10,300-mile route will trek through a dozen countries, including hot-spots such as Sudan and Libya. To be tackled at the target-rate of 1000 miles a day, if he and co-driver Paul Brace – designer of the Eagle Speedster E-type – can manage that, they should beat the British Army's 1983 record of 14 days, set by Major Hemsley in a factory-prepared Range Rover.
The little Panda, prepared by former Mercedes driver Tony Fowkes, will drive up to 600 miles between fuel fill-ups, so might just be the tortoise that can beat the hare.
Setting out from Cape Town following an appearance on South Africa's Breakfast TV on 1 February, the Panda-pair is currently on route to meet up with a pontoon, ready to paddle their way across the River Zambezi into Zambia.
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