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D&D sponsors 2009 Mongol Rally entrant

Great news: the team reached Ulaanbaatar on 12 August after driving 7487 miles in 25 days through 11 countries. They have reached their fundraising target but we're sure they wouldn't say no to any final donations: see the link at the foot of this page if you would like to help.

We have just ventured into our first sponsorship activity, by supporting one of the teams competing in the Mongol 2009 Rally. Dave's nephew is in one of the cars — Team Swift — and we have contributed to their fuel costs as well as contributing personally to their charity fundraising.

This car rally is a drive of about 10,000 miles over road, mud, sand and water to Ulaanbaatar (also known as Ulan Bator) the Capital of Mongolia. The English entrants started at Goodwood motor race circuit in Sussex on 18 July, and entrants also started in Spain and Italy. The journey should take about four weeks, and the Rally's website makes it clear that the event is a genuinely dangerous adventure, since there is no back up in the event of problems: the teams are on their own.

It is all in aid of charity and each team (about 400 this year) pledges to raise a minimum of £1000. The trusty vehicle for Team Swift is a 993cc Suzuki Swift, and once the car gets to Mongolia it will be auctioned for charity. Why such a small car? The organisers say that if your engine is over 1000cc “you should be ashamed of yourselves”, and over 1200cc an additional ‘fine’ is payable to charity!

The team's picture here shows them practising crossing a ford: through the River Darent in the village of Eynsford in Kent.

Team Swift is raising money for the Mercy Corps, a charity that is helping people in Mongolia by supporting rural communities and families by a range of projects to help them live an independent and sustainable life.

There is more about Team Swift on the official Rally website and if you have been tempted to donate to the charity, this link goes direct to the Team Swift page Just Giving website where you can make a donation.