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2010 Peking to Paris : Driving the Impossible

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Published on 16 February 2012

2010 PEKING TO PARIS Driving the Impossible Peking - Great Wall of China - Inner Mongolia - Gobi Desert - Outer Mongolia - Ulaan Baatar - Kazakhstan - Tashkent - Uzbekistan - Samarkand - Turkmenistan - Iran - Tabriz - Turkey - Istanbul - Greece - Italy - France - Paris September 10th - October 16th, 2010 Reg and Tony are entrants in this years Peking to Paris Motor Challenge and hope to drive a 1935 Bentley Derby from Bejing China to Paris France. They purshased the car in Melbourne and it arrived in Perth late December 2009. During the holiday break we spent the time researching the internet for information on Bentley Derby’s. We joined the Bentley Derby Society in America and England. Both clubs have been very helpful in our planning process by providing technical information manuals. The Americans reviewed our checklist of work to be done and helped us by including things that we had overlooked, for this challenging 15,000km adventure. The checklist we developed had over 100 items on it and nearly all the work was completed in house by Murray and Aaron. Major items of work were resetting the springs as they had sagged over time, replaceing all the wheel bearings; for this we had to make special tools to remove the hubs, fitting a new rally type exhaust, installing a large glass bowl fuel filter as the fuel in Mongolia is of a very poor quality and raising the car’s front end 25 mm for extra ground clearance. With the work complete we began road testing the Bentley in on and off road situations. The problems we encountered during these roadtests were all electrical faults. These electrical faults have been ongoing, with the last one being the brake lights this was fixed after we had loaded the car into the sea container for shipping to Beijing. The spares that we are taking on this trip consist of, 2 spare tyres, plugs, points, hoses, belts, distributor cap, head gasket, inlet and exhaust valves, clutch plate, main springs and an assortment of small items. Another major task had been in obtaining all the required visas so we can enter the countries along the route. Our passports are all ready well traveled with 3 trips to Canberra and 2 trips to London as some countries do not have embassies in Australia. We also had to obtain international drivers licence and a special Chineese drivers licence. The car also needed a visa this is called a FIVA Card and had to be obtained in Tasmaina. Before we could ship the car out we were required to obtain an import licence. That adds up to 18 visas in total and 8 driver and car licences for both Reg and Tony. We need to take camping gear as there are no hotels in remote parts of Mongolia and some other parts along the way. The rally is a timed event, each day 100 cars depart at one minute intervals and points are lost for early and late arrivals. Three books with turn by turn directions all the way from Bejing to Paris have been provided, they are very detailed with directions right into each nights camp. There is a trip computer in the car and we also have GPS so this should help. We are backed up by two sweeper mechanics cars and an ambulance. The Route Outline Our route for 2010 drives from China, through Mongolia, then briefly into Russia before turning south west into Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. This is the historic Silk Route where there are days off in such fabled cities as Almaty, and Samarkand. For anyone intrested in following our adventures the website is Or google search Peking to Paris 2010 we are car 61.