The Mongol Rally is one of the most adventurous charity rallies in the world today. With over 200 teams taking vehicles ranging from Volkswagens to Volvos (the car must have less than a 1.2L engine), cars drive over 10,000 miles from the UK to Mongolia, passing through all sorts of terrain and weather. Now imagine doing it if the driving team had all sustained spinal cord injuries and now use a wheelchair instead of their legs! Let me introduce you to the Wheelie Wanderers!
The Wanderers consist of Peter Donnelly, Jan Monaghan and Richard Cooke. All paraplegics, they are driving to raise funds for the Back Up Trust, an organization that supports people who sustain spinal cord injury through helping them regain a perspective of their abilities and what they can achieve in life. The teams goal: to raise 10,000£ for the Trust, which is roughly a pound for every mile driven.[see_also]
Peter had been able to walk once before. After a motorcycle accident at 19, he lost feeling from the waist down. Determined not to lose his adventurist spirit that existed before his life changing injury, Peter continued to do amazing activities. After the injury, he has skydived, scuba dived, traveled through Asia alone and has volunteered teaching wheelchair skills to fellow paraplegics in the UK and Asia. Peter says:
“This rally will test us, both mentally and physically. The challenge is all about exploration of possibilities as a chair user and not letting preconceptions of limitations take control when it comes to following your dreams.”
The race commences on July 14th, 2012. To follow the team’s adventure go to Rollingbackhome.co.uk and if you want to support their journey, check out their fundraising page at Virginmoneygiving.com If you’re curious to learn more about the Mongol Rally itself and are thinking about participating in the future, check out their Official Page.
The car the Wheelie Wanderers will be driving.
Map of the proposed Itinerary for the team.
Other competitors from last years race.
Peter has adapted well to navigating the road in his chair.
Peter demonstrates how he will setup his tent on the road to Mongolia.