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10,000 miles and 19 countries on a 125cc motorbike
A MANAGING director from York has given up on the idea of a relaxing summer holiday in favour of undertaking the 10,000-mile Mongol Rally on a motorbike.
Kevin Strickland, 54, of Stockton Lane, York, is the managing director of the Car Care Centre and Jax Motorcycles in James Street.
Along with his 55-year-old friend from Birmingham, Nick Plotnek, he will be taking part in the Mongol Rally.
He set off from York yesterday lunchtime on a 125cc Yamaha and will travel through 19 countries, eight time zones, across five mountain ranges, three deserts and some of the remotest places on earth over the coming days and weeks.
Mr Stickland said he had already raised close to £1,000 for charity and Mr Plotnek has raised £10,000 for the Children’s Hospital heart unit in Birmingham in memory of his son, Robert, who died there nine years ago.
The pair met on a motorbiking trip through India when Mr Stickland helped his friend whose bike hit a baby elephant which ran out into the road in front of him.
He said: “That time I was following Nick down a narrow mountain path when a baby elephant ran out across the road and Nick came off his bike. The elephant ran off and I had to help Nick as he was injured. We have been firm friends ever since.
“It was Nick who asked me to do the Mongol Rally. When he first asked me what I was doing for my summer holidays, and if I fancied doing the rally, I said ‘you must be joking’ - but here we are and I think the word for how I’m feeling is apprehensive.”
The Mongol Rally, which has been running since 2004, is described as one of the world’s last great adventures and the aim is to drive 10,000 miles in a totally unsuitable vehicle.
The pair aim to finish in between six weeks and two months time under the team name Idiots Abroad with money raised going to the children’s hospital as well as First Aid Care in Gambia and the Lotus Children’s Trust in Mongolia.
To sponsor them go to the team’s website idiotsabroad.co.uk