Cebr is proud to be sponsoring its founder and Deputy Chairman Douglas McWilliams and Director Mike McWilliams in their participation in the 7th Paris Peking Motor Challenge.
Known as the toughest classic car endurance rally in the world, the route of the rally commemorates the original 1907 challenge by the French newspaper Le Matin. It was won by the Italian Prince Borghese with the journalist Luigi Barzini (the father of the better known journalist of the same name).
July 5, 2019We pass fields of solar panels and wind farms, cross from Eastern Europe to the West and visit the world’s most visited car museum…
July 4, 2019The good Lord doesn’t like us to get too presumptuous and today he decided to remind us of that
July 3, 2019The ‘sweeps party’ – we start late, a pretty good chicken and chips in a town pronounced ‘Quids In’ and we get halfway through an unexpectedly large Poland…
July 1, 2019We enjoy a lovely drive down the coast, find the ghost of Stalin in an auto museum and look at the roosters on the spires of Riga’s churches
June 30, 2019We visit two capitals in one day, have a sea cruise in the Baltic and discover an exotic business operating opposite our hotel…
June 28, 2019We get half a day of rest, fail to get into the Konstantin Palace, meet a bear, discover how rapidly St Petersburg is growing and cross the border out of Russia…..
June 27, 2019We visit one of the most important Kremlins in Russia, experience White Nights in St Petersburg and spend a second successive night close one of President Putin’s palaces
June 26, 2019We start under Lenin’s baleful gaze, pass church after church and end up watching kids waterski pulled by zip wire….
June 25, 2019Wonderful architecture as we cruise along the Volga…Mike signs autographs…we follow a famous F1 engine designer….
June 23, 2019The car is clean (outside) as well as having brakes; we find beer from East Lothian and we manage to get understood well enough to get a burger….
June 22, 2019The best bouncy castle I’ve seen and we reach beautiful Ufa, Russia’s Islamic capital and art inspired by the rally….
June 21, 2019Playing up to national stereotypes, certificates to prove we are ‘in Europe’ and staying in what once would have been a workers’ holiday camp
June 19, 2019Wow. An uneventful day. Really quite exciting.
June 18, 2019We get muddy, see first hand how the Kazakh economy works and how it will be transformed by the Belt and Road Initiative and arrive to a round of applause and chocolates in the newly renamed Nur Sultan (formerly Astana)
June 16, 2019The car is upright again and we leave early for a 620km day and a border crossing to Kazakhstan…
June 15, 2019At last we have made it to Novosibirsk
June 14, 2019The car runs properly for the first time on the rally, we reduce the population of butterflies and are greeted like conquering heroes when we arrive in Novokuznetsk.
June 12, 2019Sorry for the gap. We have been in the Mongolian desert. This has to be sent by phone so is short!
June 7, 2019It’s a rest day so Mike gets a welcome lie down….
June 6, 2019Driving in the desert, Mike fixes our car and helps with few others, an enormous statue of Genghis Khan and Ulan Bator’s traffic jams
June 4, 2019The difficulties of getting into Mongolia
June 4, 2019We have breakfast in a revolving restaurant, get lost, race round a dirt track and see dinosaurs
June 3, 2019Traffic jams, unusual methods of transport for ponies, wonderful scenery and arrive at one of the world’s fastest growing cities
June 1, 2019China Daily Article – Classic, vintage cars roll out for epic Beijing to Paris endurance drive
June 1, 2019At last we collect our cars, meet an old friend, stick on stickers, pass scrutineering and brief China Daily
May 31, 2019Shopping for food and octane enhancer, being lectured by the chief of traffic police and a rather wonderful duck supper…
May 29, 2019Telling what is happening in an economy from an economist’s observations…Ianthe goes tobogganing…meanwhile rally fever builds up in the hotel….
May 29, 2019We visit the Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace and see the preparations for the 70th anniversary of the revolution
May 28, 2019Peking to Paris Fundraiser
The route follows the original 1907 route from Beijing across the Gobi desert to Ulaanbaatar. It then goes on to Novosibirsk in Siberia before entering Kazakhstan – a first for the 2019 rally. From Astana, the rally goes west to Kazan in Russia, and then on to St Petersburg. The route then heads into Finland before a ferry crossing from Helsinki to Tallinn in Estonia, before travelling through Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Germany toward the destination in Paris. Those that get that far normally stop in Rheims, the penultimate destination, to purchase supplies for the victory celebration in Paris.
Cebr is sponsoring participation in the rally because of its association with Cebr’s transport work. Cebr is the world’s leading expert on the economic impact of transport projects and the rally route covers roughly the route of the Silk Road/Belt project which is almost certainly the largest transport infrastructure project of the 21st Century.