London to Mongolia – Rally Stylee

Two designers from East London are taking rally driving to the extreme. Thomas Donhou and Dominic Yard are Team Radio Silence and are going on the mother of all road trips, taking their old banger across two continents, from London to Mongolia, all in the name of charity – and of course the ultimate drive.

Friends through their shared passion for BMXing, the pair, who live in Hackney Wick, are well on their way to their biggest escapade so far. On July 18 they leave the familiarity of London and begin to wing their way over 10,000 miles through varied terrains that could include mountains, rivers, deserts and extremes ranging from raging heat to possibly even snow.

Winging it is definitely the operative action as this is not a trip with back-up options for breakdowns. There is no set route, with teams being able to go any way to get from London to Mongolia’s capital, Ulan Bator. The rules are simple: there are as few as possible and that’s the beauty of the rally, as those existing are to make the trip as spontaneous and temperamental as possible.

Already experiencing breakdowns before even getting out of London means that these two definitely have their work cut out, as it’s not a matter of ‘if’ but more a case of ‘when’ and ‘how many times’ you are going to breakdown en route. Considering the amount of ground they are covering, including countries such as Belgium, Czech Republic, Russia and Uzbeckstan, it’s inevitable that it’s going to happen sooner or later. Gone are the support crews of other rallies, there’s no GPS and even maps are frowned upon. It’s all about improvising in order to get there in as close to one piece as possible.

Before they get there though, to be eligible to participate each team has to raise £1000 for charity and the duo have this covered with a variety of novel ideas. Money is going towards their two chosen charities; Mercy Corps which helps to support developing areas by building secure and sustainable communities, and the Christina Noble Foundation, which helps disadvantaged children.

First up to raise this cash was a night of game-playing glory in the shape of bicycle bingo. A two-day slog produced the mother of all bingo machines, powered by willing pedalling participants on the night. It was prizes galore with gifts being kindly donated from a great range of companies including I Dream of Wires, Gift Lab, Sweet Love Cafe, Brag Clothing and Sweatshop Yoga. The evening itself has already raised around a third of this target and both promise that there is more to come. If you are reeling at missing out on this spectacle, there are more bingo-shaped nights planned for the very near future.

To find out more about Team Radio Silence and to follow their progress on the rally, check out: www.teamradiosilence.co.uk

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