Sunday, 1 July 2007

The end...

Well, its time to say good bye now…. But before we do…

It’s been great fun doing the blog for the Mykytowychs 2007 Peking to Paris Rally… I hope the readers out there or perhaps the fans of the Blue Roo have a great time reading about their adventures! To share their heartache and their joy =)

It been a wonderful time for me and I look forward to doing it all again!

Haha =) Perhaps next time I could be one of the rally participants rather than just a writer/report! =)

Hey people, let cheer for the Mykytowychs!!!

Hip Hip Horray!!! Hip Hip Horray!!! Hip Hip Horray!!!

I look forward to the return of the Mykytowychs to listen to their story… see the pictures… watch the videos and of course… to catch up with Andrew again! =)

Hang on… there is still another Peking to Paris Rally in 2010!!! Anyone interested???

Saturday, 30 June 2007

Day 35 - Reims to Paris

The end has finally arrived!!

Congratulations to all entrants for surviving and/or participating in the 2007 Peking and Paris!

Also, congratulations to the rally organisers for organising another successful event!!

Cheers are well deserved for all, and even more cheers goes to all the rally cars for participating!!!

Again… everyone have come a long way… from pre-rally preparations… to the start in Beijing… through to the raw beauty of Mongolia… the vast expanse of Russia…the day trips in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania… to Poland.. to Germany… and to their final destination Paris…

The 2007 Peking to Paris Rally spans over 35 days of which 29 days are actual driving days. Over the 29 driving days, the participants have travelled an easy 12642kms with an average of 436kms per day… their rest days are filled with routine checks and necessary maintenance on their beloved rally car… there are only a handful of people who could actually go site seeing!

I believe all the entrants have heaps of stories to tell and to bring back home to their loved ones =) To share their joy, to discuss all disaster and most importantly their experience for the last 35 days… if not more when one includes their preparation time… Without a doubt, their loved ones also what to find out what the entrants have experience and who they have met..

Now, it is time for everyone on the rally to play dress up… to go out in their finery and enjoy the party the organisers have arranged.

Tonight’s party would reunite Leisa with her husband, Bohodar, and her son, Andrew… to talk about the time the father and son team have shared and experienced as well as the other entrant.

The last 35 days are times that will be remembered by all involved, be it that they are the organisers, the actual participants or their background supporters!!!

Once again… Congratulations to a rally well done!

What reminisce would the last 35 days be for the Mykytowychs? Would they be going for another rally, or are they already planning for the next one? Haha =D

I wonder what sort of photos and videos would I get to see from Andrew? Honestly, I can’t wait!! Can’t wait to see some of the actual shots on the rally since I have been following it so closely =)

Friday, 29 June 2007

Day 34 - Koblenz to Reims (+Border)

Finally all participants will enter France! Their day will end at Reims after driving 461kms from Koblenz of Germany.

There is only 161kms to go for tomorrow final sprint to Paris!

Wonder what the Mykytowych is now thinking? How did Blue Roo fair in all this?

Thursday, 28 June 2007

Day 33 - Potsdam to Koblenz

A day travelling in Germany… 556kms separates Potsdam from Koblenz..

What has Germany install for our favourite team the Mykytowychs and the Blue Roo?

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Day 32 - Gdansk to Potsdam (+Border)

All repairs are complete?… Checked!

Daily maintenance complete?… Checked!

Blue Roo is ready to rock and roll?… Checked!

Fire up the engine and Blue Roo is now mobile!!!

The Mykytowychs will take leave from Poland for Germany today… there is a 598kms drive between Gdansk and Potsdam. This is the longest drive in the last few days of the rally and it also involves the crossing of the Poland/Germany Border.

Are all repairs in good running condition? Would there be any problem with the border crossing?

Regardless, the Mykytowychs and the Blue Roo is now back on the road… and that’s all we care about =) haha =D

I am a disappointed… despite my effort of trying bring you news from the frontline… Andrew is not responding to any of my emails… I guess, I just don’t have to care so much!

Well, since I haven’t heard from the front line… according to the news published by the rally officials… the entrants have their first stretch of Motorway since China upon crossing the border into Germany!

What a relieve this would be for a lot of cars and participants!!!

A silver medal still goes to the Mykytowychs and the Blue Roo… and as for the leader board… our favourite team still hold an overall position of 10 and a class position of 7 =)

Finally, here is Andrew's spill on the Blue Roo's problems and his thoughts on the competition side of the rally...

The car ran beautifully today, albeit the top speed is slightly lower (95km/h). Many competitors were thrilled and relieved to see us back in the rally (the competition stages are now over).

Thus, throughout Mongolia and Russia and the Baltic States we gained and held onto a Gold Medal status and an overall placing of 5 in Classic Category. We are now holding Silver and an overall placing of 10.

In hindsight, if we had no problems in Mongolia during the first 2 days and no problems with the differential, then I would reckon that we could have bettered 4 overall with Gold.

There is always 2010!

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

Day 31 - Gdansk (Day Off)

Another well earned rest day for all in the rally!

All still active in the rally would have driven/travelled 10866km in the last 25 driving days since Beijing… This will give an average of 435kms driven per day. Remember rest days were not counted in the average =)

Gdansk is their last rest day before the end of the rally… all those involved have indeed come a long way… from preparation.. to the start in Beijing and now… we are only 4 days away till the end…

I believe everyone could see the light at the end of the tunnel! However, this is the time where the entrants need to be more vigilant!!! They are so close to the end… but they have still got a while to go… say 1776kms till Paris!

Maintenance and routine checks are a must for all!

Wonder how Blue Roo is going?? Did the Mykytowychs manage to fix all the problems?

Yippee!!!! Blue Roo is back on the road again!!!

Back on the road again!!!!

Andrew found an axle today and have done all repairs!!!

So watch out Paris!! Here comes the Mykytowychs!!!

Andrew’s thoughts…

The Polish Rally / Motor-Cross Club they came for our car and us…towed us 55km through pouring rain to their garage and had the car up on a hoist and axle removed PRIOR to the replacement axle arriving. The donor axle came from a light Polish truck – complete with prop-shaft and brake lines.

They transported dad and myself back to the Hotel where we (tried to) relax. Later in the evening THEY delivered the Holden to the Hotel. Dad took it for a test run and parted with 2500 local currency – worth it when no other options are available.

Monday, 25 June 2007

Day 30 - Mikolajki to Gdansk

Today, the Mykytowychs would be making a 351kms passage across Poland… they will be travelling from Mikolajki to Gdansk…

There are only 5 days to go with tomorrow being a rest day… so there are only 4 more days of driving…

It is unfortunate that such disaster has fallen on the Blue Roo yesterday… and this will impact further on their position as they are unable to complete the time trails today… Andrew advises that he will keep checking in and out so that they could maintain their silver medal!

Let us hope that they manage to find a truck to transport the Blue Roo to Gdansk and they could arrange for repair work before the day is finished =)

All the best to Blue Roo and the Mykytowychs!!!

Andrew, don’t give up and don’t sound so down! You are now in an area where you could get help and fix Blue Roo! It does not matter what medal you bring home or what position you are in, remember it a great achievement to have gone on this rally and experience all the up and downs!!!

I am proud of you and what you have done! And will keep cheering you on for all your endeavours!!!

Go Go Blue Roo! Go Go Mykytowychs!! Go Go Andrew!!! You are still Number One in my eyes!!!

All in all… by the end of the day… the Blue Roo has an overall position of 10 and a class position of 7 =) And true to his words, they are holding onto the Silver Medal! =)

Andrew’s experience on for the day…

I spent day 30 with the medical crew bludging a lift and looking at the competition stages from the other side of the windscreen. Other competitors (and organisers) felt our sorrows. Meanwhile, dad was with the car and transporter in Gdansk looking for a replacement gear.

That night we contacted the Polish Rally / Motor-Cross Club of Poland who came to our (and other competitors) aid. We showed them the Holden, the gear, the axle and off they went…we were dubious in them finding a differential or replacement axle on such short notice.

Sunday, 24 June 2007

Day 29 - Vilnius to Mikolajki (+Border)

403kms separates Vilnius of Lithuania and Mikolajki of Poland with another border crossing… The last 4 days has been filled with border crossings, plenty of paperwork for all the border guards as well as everyone in the rally.

What did the Mykytowych think of all the border crossings? Were all the paperwork in place and did all administration run efficiently and smoothly?

There are a total of 5 time trails today… Vevis, Juchy, Soldany One, Soldany Two and Milki!

Major disaster fallen on the Blue Roo during the third time trail - 29.3 - Soldany One… the Mykytowych took too long there... it appears that the gear box and the diffs are damaged… and therefore for all subsequent time trail of the day... they have to put in their resignation… =(

Blue Roo has to be towed to Mikolajki to complete the day and Andrew anticipates that Blue Roo will be on a truck in order to reach Gdansk tomorrow…

Now the Mykytowych is on a Silver Medal and has an overall position of 9 and a class position of 6.

Hey! They are still in the top ten!!!

Here is what Andrew has to say…

After a successful morning of border crossing to Mikolajki (just show passports) and two timed competitive stages, the differential in the FC Holden decided to give up on us. There was a tremendous noise and both rear wheels locked up and brought us to a skidding halt – we had visions of gearbox and differential problems…our hold onto the Gold Medal was now but a distant memory.

The Holden was towed back to the Hotel in Mikolajki by the film crew who relished in the visuals and heartbreak of both my dad and me. In the car park the Holden was by itself, the rear was up on axel stands and the differential came out to reveal a collapsed bearing race and a stripped pinion gear. Our hopes for retaining 5 place overall was dashed as we had to transport the car to Gdansk and have it repaired.

Saturday, 23 June 2007

Day 28 - Riga to Vilnius (+Border)

Today’s journey will take the Mykytowych from Riga of Latvia to Vilnius of Lithuania. It is a 394km drive between the two cities.

What do they think of the area so far? How would Blue Roo perform with newly fitted shock absorber?!

Another eventful day filled with beautiful scenery!

4 time trails were on the cards, Time Trail 28.1 - Riga Circuit starting at the Riga Motor Museum, Time Trail 28.3 – Lecava in the woods, Time Trail 28.3b Bucase at the Bucase Forrest at the and Time Trail 28.4 – Dubrogiai the hills with sudden crest and long open bends…

There are more super smooths gravel roads for more glorious rallying in the third Baltic State!

During today’s run… the Mykytowychs that the engine oil is leaking and has gone through 7litres of oil before the end of the day!

Despite that, the Blue Roo has finished the day without a hitch! And have also hold onto its position as the day end =)

Friday, 22 June 2007

Day 27 - Tallinn to Riga (+Border)

The Mykytowychs will leave Tallinn of Estonia for Riga of Latvia in a 406km journey.

This is their first day travelling inside Eastern Europe… wonder what will they see and what will they come across?

Today, I have updated the webpage with extra photos added to the gallery =) Feel free to have a look! =)

Oh, I have also found various Russian based website that provide a link to the Mykytowychs’ Rally webpage and therefore to this blog! Haha =D Don’t you think they are getting famous and is leaving their mark in the world with this journey?! =)

Good new!!! Andrew says that there might be a chance for him to get the shock absorbers in Riga… let hope all will go well for him =)

It appears the day has been wonderful with the rally official sending praises to Estonia and many have commented that this is the best day since Beijing!

Wow, there are 4 time trails today…
- Time Trail 27.1 –Tallinn Rally Cross
- Time Trail 27.2 – Rummu
- Time Trail 27.3 – Vaimõisa and
- Time Trail 27.4 – Parnu Circuit.

The Mykytowychs has done very well in all today’s time trail and by the end of the day, they have kept their overall position of 6 and class position of 4!

Even better news!!! Andrew did get the shock absorbers… I believe he will be installing them tonight, if not, first thing tomorrow morning!!! Blue Roo would be in even better condition now!!!

Go Blue Roo!!! Go the Mykytowychs!!!

Thursday, 21 June 2007

Day 26 - St Petersburg to Tallinn (+Border)

After leaving St Petersburg… the rally entrants would leave Russia and approach Tallinn of Estonia… This is their first border crossing since Day 12 on the 7 June and is a 450km drive between St Petersburg and Tallinn

What will the Mykytowych see in Estonia?

It appears that the border crossing became bigger than “Ben Hur”! It was a test of patience!! Despite all the preparation and promises, many entrants had a hard time in getting a stamp on their passport. Various items were examined and lengthy car inspections were also carried out! According to the rally organiser, today’s border crossing is one of the two most troublesome ever experienced in the last 20 years! They are of the impression that promises were made but it never materialised..

To top that off... there are Russian Police on the road and have pulled up various entrants to fine the on the spot! Be it speeding or other traffic related issue!

What a day!!

However, for those who managed to cross the border… the scenery and road of Estonia was “to die for”!

Estonia are filled with forest track that have free flowing open bends with a smooth surface! There were also wooden chalets and cabins coupled with twisty smooth tarmac along the coast almost took the entrants back in time… People are smiling and the children are cheering… today could easily be one of the best drives in the rally.

Time trails has recommenced... there are thre time trails and the roads has been closed today purely for the use of the rally. With the help of local motor club officials… the time trail have ran like clockwork! However, due to the harassment at the Russian border… the time trails had been cancelled.

Andrew say that they have completed all today’s challenges on time and Blue Roo is still looking good =)

Mango and Kiwi is still hanging on at the front of the car =)

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

Day 25 - St Petersburg (Day Off)

After surviving the longest drive yesterday… all the entrants are having a day off at St Petersburg.

Without a doubt… there will be those that require the day to carry out repairs while there will also be those that only need a routine check and maintenance.

Since Beijing… all those on the road have travelled 8862kms over the last 20 driving days which take as to an average of 443kms per day.

Bohodar has left with the camera crew to various tourist destinations for his day off… while Andrew concentrated his efforts in getting a set of shock absorbers upon carrying out the routine checks on the Blue Roo =)

Unfortunately, Andrew is not having any luck… he has located the correct ones in Holland (the factory) but any retail sales have to go through their distributors… At this point in time… he could not get a hold of anyone in Latvia and Lithuania.

Not to worry, the current ones still works… the Blue Roo needs a new set just to improve it competitiveness on all upcoming time trails =)

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Day 24 - Moscow to St Petersburg

Today marks the longest drive in the entire rally… 730kms from Moscow to St Petersburg...

Lets us hope today would be trouble free too!

Monday, 18 June 2007

Day 23 – Moscow (Day Off)

Yay! Rest Day!!!

Lets have a look at some of the statistics… so far those travelling on the road since Beijing, would have easily travelled 8132kms... and that is an addition of 1898kms since the last rest day on Day 18 which is the 13 June 07.

On average, the entrants would have travelled 428kms per day over last 19 driving days… and the average distance travelled since the last rest day is 475kms.

The Mykytowychs would continue their search for the shock absorbers and carry out detail inspection and necessary maintenance on the Blue Roo.

Let hope they find what they need this time and would be able to go for a bit of site seeing in Moscow… the Capital of Russia.

I have sent Andrew an email with details of the distributors for Koni shock absorbers in Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic and Germany. I hope that Blue Roo could find a new set of shock absorbers along the way, if in case the Mykytowychs cannot find one today in Moscow.

As for being a tourist… the Mykytowych has visited the Red Square, Lenin’s tomb, Kremlin, St Basils and the Gum Department Store! =)

Sunday, 17 June 2007

Day 22 - Niz. Novgorod to Moscow

After another 439km drive from Niz. Novgorod… the rally entrants has finally reached Moscow! Not to mention, they could look forward to they rest day!!

Remember on Day 18 at Yekaterinburg on 13 June… the rally organisers have decided cancel Day 11 as a timed day and our favourite team has dropped in position due to this decision… The good news is that they have now decided to reinstate Day 11 as a timed day!!

Therefore, the Mykytowych is now back to holding an overall position of 6 and a class position of 4! They are still holding onto their Gold Medal Status!!

Saturday, 16 June 2007

Day 21 - Kazan to Niz. Novgorod

Two more days until the next rest day in Moscow (including today’s passage of course) =)

A 392km drive from Kazan to Niz. Novgorod.. Wonder how Blue Roo is battling on with the Russian tarmac so far?

Andrew say the drive today is trouble free!!!

Friday, 15 June 2007

Day 20 - Perm to Kazan

Wow! Its another long drive! From Perm to Kazan… it would be 688kms today!!!

After some daily checks… the Mykytowychs and the Blue Roo would embark on their journey for Day 20… wonder what will they see and what will they come across?

The Ural Hotel is the largest hotel in Perm (see phtoto above). It managed to house all the entrants... some 300 bookings! Upon some research on the internet… this hotel has 434 rooms!!!
No wonder it could house all the rally entrants without any protest =)

Today has been a rather interesting drive… it’s a nice warm sunny day and the entrants are driving through green scenery with rolling hills.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

Day 19 - Yekaterinburg to Perm

Another short run of 378kms from Yekaterinburg to Perm..

By the end of today, all entrants that have checked into Perm would have completed 6613km… just over half of the 2007 Peking to Paris Rally!

Wow!! What an effort for all the entrants whom are still driving in the rally since Beijing (Peking)! Regardless of whether they still classify in the rally or not, it is still a feat to have come so far! They have all proven that they are not quitters!!! They could all adapt, change and make do with what they have got! The entrants are quite resourceful!!!

Let wish them all the best of the remaining 6408km between Perm and Paris! May they all enjoy themselves and the remainder of their adventures!

Back to our favourite team… The Mykytowychs and the Blue Roo… despite facing the unknown world of Mainland China… the heavily corrugated desert tracks and sandstorms of Mongolia… the cold and wet Russia with long daylight hours… and along with various minor problem with Blue Roo… the team is forging on with excitement and determination!

Be it a different culture… sandstorms… hailstorms... roads or no roads… for the last 19 days… it appears that nothing would stop the Mykytowychs and the Blue Roo from reaching their destination.. P

I am proud for their achievements and proud of being able to create this blog for them… to share with the world some of the titbits of their adventures!

Now that we are over the halfway mark… there is a total of 110 cars that has clocked in at Perm as oppose to the 128 cars that left Beijing… The rally organisers found various problems and many of which could have been minimised should the entrants take heed to the book “How to Prepare a Successful Rallycar” published by the rally organisers… To a degree… some of the entrants have no one but themselves to blame! Remember it’s an endurance rally… its not a beauty contest!

As the day comes to an end.. the Mykytowychs is still holding onto their position on the board… for those whom has forgotten… they currently hold… an overall position of 8 and a class position of 6! They are still holding onto their Gold Medal!!!

Keep up the good work!

Oh!!! Almost forgot!!! The link to the webpage and the blog for the Mykytowychs is officially on the 2007 Peking to Paris Website maintained by the Rally Organisers!!!

YAY!!! I have finally made it! Now it’s a call for celebration!!! Haha =D

It is another rainy day today… and a chance to test out the newly installed yet modified windscreen wipers.. the wipers worked really well so there no worries! Andrew has checked the internet to source for a set of shock absorbers… he emailed the distributor in St. Petersburg asking for help and will check out any possible retailer in Moscow.

Andrew target to fix the shock absorbers prior to leaving Russia and entering Estonia… so that Blue Roo is better prepared for the pending time trials!

Andrew’s review of the roads so far... he says to a certain degree… despite the erosion and corrugations in Mongolia... since there is no road/track you could drive anywhere you want, and make your own judgement on which way is the best… However, back on the tarmac in Russian… one have no choice but stay on it and be bombarded by the pot holes and other road damages due to poor maintenance…

Andrew has a chance to visit the Kungur Ice Caves in today’s journey! The general temperature inside the cave do not exceed 5°C.. there are various forms of fine ice formations and the ice crystals are all very fragile. Some are even columns that reach from the floor of the cave to the roof! However, Andrew say they are not as good as the caves we visited around the South West of Western Australia!

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Day 18 - Yekaterinburg (Day Off)

A well deserved rest day after travelling for 1615km in the last three days… Lucky, all the driving are now completed on tarmac roads… so… in a way all the entrants are blessed with a smoother road surface unlike that of Mongolia! Just have to watch out on the occasional bumps and pot-hole!! =)

Hopefully, not as much trouble will arise for all the rally cars from now on… but since we all don’t have a crystal ball… we all will never know., unless we keep in touch with the entrants!

After being sand blasted in Mongolia… the pass few day has been fill with wet weather… hail storm… steady icy rain… for those with open top cars… they can’t help but be drenched and chilled to the bone…

Wonder how they are handling the extreme change? How are the entrants getting along with each other? How are the relationship between the driver and the navigator within the same car?

It’s a test for understanding and tolerance for all as time pass them by, especially when trouble continues to sneak up on them and they are not close enough to Paris yet!

Back to the rally… so far the entrant would have done 6234kms (for those that are constantly on the road).. which means over last 15 days of driving… they have done an average of 416kms. I might sound a lot for some readers out there, but believe me.. it is not a lot especially when one is on sealed roads…

The Mykytowychs should be out hunting for a set of shock absorber replacement as well as the arm for the window wipers.. This will make them doing maintenance on Blue Roo on their day off… it doesn’t sound as if there much time to see the sites… but in order to do well.. to hold their place… and to enjoy the rest of the rally… I believe it a price that they are willing to pay.

The morning has been filled with routine checks on the Blue Roo.. an oil change, cleaning out of spark plugs and also a change to various filters..

Andrew will also be handing over
some footage for the filming crew too.. and the father and son will be going to go for their shock absorber hunt!!!

Unfortunately… they did not end up finding the right shock absorber today… so it would have to wait until they reach Moscow in 4 days time… However, they have got the windscreen wipers sorted after some drilling and modifications..

With regards to the film crew.. Bohodar went to a Church with the crew to take some footage… this Church is where the Russian Royal family got assassinated. At the moment.. it look as if the documentary on the 2007 Peking to Paris Rally would also include some history of the areas that they drive through! I think it would be a very interesting series for all!!!

The Mykytowychs are now back down to an overall position of 8 and a class position of 6.. This is due to the changes the rally organisers made on Day 11 with regards to the checking in time and its location… Don’t worry they still carry a Gold Medal!!!

Lets keep cheering them on!!!

Go! Go! The Mykytowychs! Go! Go! The Blue Roo!!

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Day 17 - Tyumen to Yekaterinburg

It’s a relatively short day compared to the last two.. Only 315km to Yekaterinburg from Tyumen.

Without a doubt all the entrants will be looking forward to their rest day… yes, there is one tomorrow! A well earned one don’t you think?! Especially after two day worth of long distance driving!

The Mykytowychs have more shopping/hunting to do to finalise some repairs for Blue Roo tomorrow..

What adventures would they have today?

Andrew say he is having trouble with sleep lately… We all won’t blame him when we know… the sun rises at 4am in the morning and doesn’t set until 11pm… There are 19 hours of daylight.. and only 5 hours in the night!!! What a long day!!!

How do you all think we will behave when we are being put through 19 hours of daylight! Especially for those thom are use to having mornings… afternoons… evenings… and night?!!! For those who work… it will appears if work will never end… for those who study (in daytime) the classes won’t appear to finish!! For the night critters.. the night is simply not long enough!

My… do you think we well all want to sleep all the time… just simply the night is not long enough?!

Today has been another wet day.. but the drive has been good and is hassle free!

Monday, 11 June 2007

Day 16 - Omsk to Tyumen

Today, the Blue Roo will be leaving Omsk for a 632kms dive to Tyumen.

Two rather long drive in a roll! Wonder what kind of place would Tyumen be? Is it like Omsk or would they be leaving modern civilisation behind once again?

Today’s been another fun drive for the Mykytowychs.. they are doing well considering that they are running on a rebuild set of shock absorbers… they will continue their search… although the rebuild ones are not at their peak but it is performing way better than before the rebuild.

Let all hope they have better luck at Yekaterinburg in finding one! Its only two days away before the next rest day!!!

The Blue Roo didn’t come away unscathed today.. during the rain.. the window wiper on the driver side broke.. for emergency repairs.. the Blue Roo was driven into a Petrol Station and the Mykytowychs have swapped the one on the passenger side as the replacement! Andrew advise that the arm has to be installed back to front in order for it to work…

So now… should it rain again.. the navigator, Andrew will have no visibility… but I believe we all agree that its better than the driver, Bohodar having none!!! Can’t be driving blind right?! =) Good on them for their quick thinking! All they have to do is wait for the next rest day and go and get some new wiper!!!

Sunday, 10 June 2007

Day 15 - Novosibirsk to Omsk

Another long drive today… 668 kms from Novosibirsk to Omsk. Novosibirsk is a modern busy city which all the entrants hasn’t seen for a while… there are several garages nearby willing to give all those in need a hand (with a price of course).. Many has spent the day going over their ride undoing all the damages that Mongolian road has dealt them..

Let hope the Mykytowychs have fully utilised the rest day to finalise and complete all that is required on the Blue Roo, while allowing some time for themselves to wind-down and relax.

There have been quite a few changes in the placing board for the entrants… with quite a few cars retiring and some that are unable to be classified for the race. There is only 109 cars that set out from Novosibirsk with a few having an early start while some are still playing catch up…

The Mykytowychs appear to have no big troubles and have managed to hold onto their placing… an overall position of 6 and a class position of 4!

Saturday, 9 June 2007

Day 14 - Novosibirsk (Day Off)

Finally… a rest day!

According to the distances given on the Official Peking to Paris Webpage managed by the Rally Organisers… the entrants now have travelled 4619kms over the last 12 days of driving, excluding Day 6 and today since they are rest days! So, I guess we all give them a break and not include them it to further lower their average travelled distance per day =) Doing the maths… this means they would average out to be about 385km in the 12 days. Of course, this is only true if the entrants use the exact same/very similar course where these distances were taken.

For this precious day… What to you think the rally entrants would do especially after all the rough roads in Mongolia? How many would be able to see the site and relax? Or should I ask how much repair and adjustment work would be going on in the carpark for every team? Would there be those that need to stock up with local supplies?

Without a doubt, the Mykytowychs would be out hunting for a shock absorber replacement. Let hope that they find the one they needed…

Hum.. Andrew advises that there is no plans to do any site seeing.. they will concentrate their efforts in the hunt for two shock absorbers.. then move onto Blue Roo maintenance where they will… at the very least… check all spark plugs, check all oil and greases..

At the moment, Andrew is anticipating a drop in their position, base on the fact that the Blue Roo is limited in speed compared to other entrants whom may be able to drive faster on open roads..

Of course.. we will keep our eyes open and see what will happen in the next few days!

Friday, 8 June 2007

Day 13 - Bijsk to Novosibirsk

Hopefully, the Mykytowychs has all gotten a good night sleep last night =)

Today is short drive compare to yesterday.. the drive to Novosibirsk is around 437kms.

Wonder what type of day would the Mykytowychs would have.. aside from driving that is.. =)

Andrew says it has been a very simple drive with some showers along the way.. and both Kiwi and Mango got wet…

The Mykytowychs is holding onto their place on the board with an overall position of 6 and a class position of 4!

Thursday, 7 June 2007

Day 12 - Border to Bijsk (+Border)

After passing the border… it will be a very very long drive… 635km to Bijsk! The Mykytowychs finally made it into Russia!!

Wonder what the Russians’ roads would be like? As rough as those in Mongolia or a rather smooth drive compare to the last couple of days?

Last night was also their last day in camp arrangements… Tonight the Mykytowychs are staying in D. Vostok Hotel in Bijsk… Do you think it would feel like heaven for them to finally be sleeping in beds?!

The rally crew arrived at the Border around 0800hrs (progressively) to complete all administrations required.. I wonder if there are ladies with mini-skirts (like the Mongolian Border) or are they all “macho” men?

Unfortunately, on the pervious night... Andrew had one drink too many and have ended up with a severe hang over! His father, took up the chance to have a go at him for sleeping in and not completing the paperwork prior to their start time today! Serve Andrew right for his actions I thought =) He should know better than to drink too many when he still have to navigate!

It has definitely been a long day… the border crossing and the first long distance drive .. the Mykytowychs did not reach Bijsk until 2230hrs! What a long day!

However, Andrew describe the drive as being very picturesque. =)

Wednesday, 6 June 2007

Day 11 - Khovd to Border Camp

After a rough time yesterday… the time in Mongolia is now coming to an end… with a rather short trip of 295km, the Mykytowychs will leave Khovd and arrive at the Border Camp in Mongolia… It’s their final night in Mongolia…

How would the Mykytowychs describe their 2500 plus kilometres journey in Mongolia? What reminiscence would Mongolia be for

I hope the father and son have made up since their argument.. and could now freely share their thoughts on what has been and what to come =)

Today has been filled with river crossings.. Andrew says that all went well for them while the last car didn’t reach the camp until 2 hours after midnight.

More importantly, the father and son has made up =) What a relieve!

Oh! Little Kiwi has been laughing at Mango all day as they get all dirty and muddy through the river
. Don't they look worn out ?!

Congratulations to the Mykytowchs!!!

The Mykytowychs now hold the place with an overall position of 6 and a class position of 4!!!

Andrew says, surprisingly, despite this region being one of the most remote area on Earth… the Petrol Stations are constantly giving an easy 92 Octane Fuel! So don’t judge things by its cover!

To Andrew.. Mongolia is an extremely dry place where the desert meets up with snow capped mountains.. He say the area is filled with a rugged beauty... Mongolia seems to transport him back to the beginning of time where the virgin Earth has not been touch and influence by the human race.

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Day 10 - Altay to Khovd

Another night in their own tent… today is a 433km drive from Altay to Khovd…

More Mongolian desert for Andrew and his father... Do you think they would wish to be out of the area or are they thoroughly enjoying themselves and don't want to leave???

Today been a difficult day for the Mykytowych.. again.. there were two time trials… and of course, more shocking roads for the Blue Roo and its occupants..

The scenery is very nice… with snow on the mountain tops… and it even rained!

The entrants have been advise that the second time trail of the day will not be time… as there are many that are still catching up with the main group from almost two days ago!

With all the rough roads in the last few days… Blue Roo suffered further damages.. Shock absorber damaged (found leaking) and the front fog light is smashed..

To top it off, Andrew found the spare shock absorber is different to the one installed!!! He say he will have to run on the existing one! He will have to wait until he reach Russia before finding a replacement. Luckily the loose suspension pin can be replaced easily..

Andrew and his father had another blew today… where Andrew commented that his dad either driveing too fast or too slow… not to mention Andrew got a bit sunburnt.

Andrew also say that the time set for the day based on an average travelling speed of 70km/hr is not practical for the road conditions!

After talking to other entrants that have went on the perivous Peking to Paris Rally and the World Rally, Andrew has been advise that the roads on the last 4 day is rougher that those travelled in pervious rally!

Is this a Demolition Rally rather than an Endurance Rally??

Monday, 4 June 2007

Day 9 - Bayankhongor to Altay

After a night in their tents… the Blue Roo will take its occupant further into Mongolia… today’s destination is Altay.. a 388km drive from Bayankhongor

Again, more vast open desert scenery for the day’s journey.. would the Mykytowych be sick and tired of seeing endless sand horizons… sick of the magnificent yet barren landscape?

There is two time trails today… Time Trail 9.1-Km33 and Time Trail 9.2-River Crossing…

Yup, you have read correctly… it’s the first river crossing for the rally… Andrew advise that the Blue Roo “sailed” across the river with out any problems =)

Although, the Mykytowychs did not reach the camp until an hour and a half later… Overall, Andrew says its been a good day..

Oh! Andrew advise that there is a penalty free zone of half an hour and the maximum penalty is applied up to 2 hours from Rally’s anticipate finish time..

None the less, they are still in the running for Gold and have maintained their place from yesterday!

Keep up the good work!