Herald - Issue 400

Page 56 • The HERALD • 7th January 2021 v SEND YOUR LOCAL NEWS TO THE HERALD v Telephone: 023 8019 9582 • Mobile: 07788 637854 Email: forestcaravans@gmail.com • 79 Long Lane, Holbury SO45 2ND FOREST CARAVANS • Caravan Sales • Caravan & Motorhome Servicing & Maintenance • Damp Repairs • Pre-Purchase Inspection • Hitch & Pitch Service • Repairs, Spares & Accsssories Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm, Saturday 9am-12noon, Sunday by Appointment SALES, SERVICING & MAINTENANCE 15 Years Experience in the leisure industry Our knowledgeable staff are on hand to keep your vehicle on the road in a safe manner • We offer all garage services including free collection and delivery from your home • We now offer Dpf cleaning - Injector cleaning - Turbo cleaning and Air intake cleaning to help your car run cleaner improving its performance and economy. • Good Garage Scheme – RMI – Trust my Garage Member MOT’s, TYRES, CLUTCHES, CAMBELTS, SERVICING, WELDING, DIAGNOSTICS, LASER-TRACKING. CARS, VANS UP TO 3.5T, MOTORHOMES UP TO 30’ 023 8001 0029 Badminston Lane, Fawley, SO45 1BX 30th June Sadly only one night in Tallinn with no time for sightseeing – I have to remind myself, this is a car rally, not a holiday! is is it; the nal week of a mammoth adventure as long as Reggie can keep going we will reach Paris within a week. Whatever happens this has been an adventure of Biblical proportions. Still thanking God for helping us survive Russia! We le Tallinn and headed straight to the race track for a test. Lots of people turned out to watch. e track was tarmac and gravel mixed together and quite demanding but we managed quite well and completed one good lap. Today was a pleasant driving day, including a nice lunch stop. We le Estonia at about 2pm and crossed into Latvia, following the coast towards Riga. We had one nal test just outside Riga which was a fast circuit with obstacles in the form of a wall of tyres and a tight chicane. e old Merc did us proud and gripped the track for dear life! 1st July Le Riga at 9.02am and threaded our way through the morning tra c. Drove west through pleasant countryside, eventually entering Lithuania. e country seemed less prosperous than Estonia but the views and country looked lovely. No time to stop of course and a er a long morning drive we reached our rst test at about 1pm. e test was an old race circuit, with chicanes, barriers, and other obstacles. e old Mercedes now feeling more than a little tired a er driving nearly 8,000 miles since leaving Beijing. e Gobi Desert took its toll and so has the continuous competition, and driving to schedule, o en on gravel tracks or potholed roads. We crossed into Poland; the people are always kind and courteous. How brilliant to be able to buy petrol and pay a er the tank has been lled. e Russian way is to pay rst rather like North America. Another 400km and we find ourselves for the second test of the day, yet another race circuit. is time a Rally Cross circuit with tarmac, gravel, tight corners and obstacles to avoid. e strategy was very simple; drive fast and try to avoid hitting things! Fortunately our hotel at Mikolajki is only a couple of km away, lled the tank and o to bed, ready for another busy day tomorrow. 2nd July A tough day for old Reggie, only completed 420km but it felt a long day of tests and village tours for the locals to see the cars. I am struck by how nice Poland is or at least the part I am driving through. No comparison with Russia, it’s more like a prosperous European country with nice roads and cycle tracks which would put the UK to shame. We arrived at another race circuit at Bydgoszcz. A tight test with sharp bends resulted in shrieking tyres and sliding back ends. Given the conditions we were pleased with our 2 minute 45 second time. I am conscious not many more days le . Just hope Reggie brings us back to Paris. e end is in sight. 3rd July We le our hotel at 9.02am and headed to the same race track as yesterday a ernoon, completing it in the opposite direction this time. Reggie managed the same time as yesterday, with squealing tyres. Finally we headed o through the countryside. What a lovely picturesque country Poland is, and such a contrast from Russia, which needs so much investment. A er a 30 minute time control we proceed to our next test on an old air eld. Around the perimeter there were sandy tracks, with gullies of course just to in ict more damage on my very tired car. e test was complex with speed, hidden entrances and hidden controls. It was a tricky one but really good fun. A er 300km we reached our hotel, e Radisson Blu at Szczecin, for now we rest as tomorrow, all being well, we are o to Germany. 4th July Started early at 8.02am, and o to a street race circuit in Szczecin, the roads were closed and supervised by the police. Each car drove onto a ramp, had a quick interview with a local TV Chanel and a countdown began. Despite the early hour the route was lined with cheering crowds. We were headed for a disused air base, probably something from the Cold War days in this part of East Germany. O we went, as fast as we can muster with squealing tyres! No match though for the quick cars, but we had a good average time. e air base was deep in a wooded area and made for picturesque driving. Next stop is Wolfsburg, and our nal time control was at the Volkswagen factory, where we were treated to drinks and nibbles, hosted by the VW Managing Director. Leaving the car park an elderly gentleman seemed Peking to Paris Motor Challenge – The Last Leg by Michael Eatough, Press Officer and Secretary, Austin A30 and A35 Club Continued on page 57