Firstly let us start with a huge thank you. We have had so many good will messages from many of the people reading these messages. The idea of them was so that as many people as possible could share our adventures. It seems that we have achieved that target and what would be really great, if you could let us know if you have been inspired by our story.
The true moral of our story is please don’t wait. If you have something you’ve always wanted to do, make it happen. Pretty much everyone involved had serious doubts about whether we had the time or the money to get out there. Yes, we were tight on both counts, but we did it. Life is too short to wait until you can afford it or everything is perfect. Near enough is good enough and you can always save or borrow money.
So what happened after Speed Week?
The last official day of speed week is the Friday. By this time all the competitors and volunteers have pretty much had enough. Eight or nine days of twelve hours days takes its toll no matter how much fun you’re having. Friday night was celebrated at Carmen’s Black and White bar in Wendover, one of the most famous bars in America, well worth a visit.
Saturday morning arrived a little later than planned, there were a few sore heads and as a team we said our goodbyes and went in a number of different directions. Pete left to spend some well earned time with his family back home, Harry and Penny left on a scenic tour of the Grand Canyon, Andy also took in the big hole in the ground and the remainder of the crew took a leisurely drive to Las Vegas arguably the true home of American excess. During the next few days those of us that stayed in the US met up in Las Vegas but finally Ian and Janine had to take the car and truck back to Houston. (via Roswell, New Mexico, Ian said it was important!)
Once the truck arrived back in Texas the lady at Enterprise Rent a Truck was very pleased to see the truck. We had asked for around 3000 miles, in the end the truck covered 5064 miles without missing a beat but drinking a fair amount of diesel! Not only did the truck make this massive trip but our Hammersleys trailer also covered the miles without so much as a whimper.
The car and trailer arrived safe and sound on the 5th of October. Harry and Ian drove up to Tilbury to collect the trailer expecting to see the car having disappeared into a pile of rust with fibreglass flakes and the loose parts to have been mislaid. All looked surprisingly good.
The outside of the car has actually survived very well. Obviously the fibreglass was completely unscathed but the crucial underneath area is not as bad as we feared.
The inside unfortunately was virtually impossible to desalinate before we left and somewhere along the line some water got in. Ian’s tools are looking a little the worse for their travels!
The engine bay, apart from some surface damage to the aluminium parts looks really good and with some simple cleaning will be ready for action.
So what’s next?
Now we have the car back and are able to get on with some work, we have the small issue of not having any money. As a result we’ve spent a lot of time learning from our mistakes and planning our return trip. Yes, you read that right we are going back. We got enough out of the car to realise that it had a lot more potential than we saw. A new (stronger) gearbox has been located as soon as funds allow that will be purchased. We have also sourced a new ECU system that will allow us to have a 100% tune BEFORE we leave. Over the next few weeks every nut and bolt will be removed, greased and replaced. The turbocharger will be refitted and the wiring loom adapted for the new ECU.
We are going to be working towards a return trip in 2020. But this time we are going mobhanded! Our trials and tribulations have already inspired two separate teams to come with us, they are both taking motorcycles. Yet another reason to declare our trip a huge success! If we have inspired you to come with us contact us via the website, there will be room in the shipping container for more vehicles and we now have the experience to avoid some of the pitfalls.
The story continues…