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.