Festival of Slow European Launch to the Mongol Rally
With the 1-litre engine fumes barely dissipated, the puddles scarcely subsided & the cacophony of shouts, screams and sirens actually still ringing in our ears from the Festival of Slow UK on Saturday, it is time for the Mongol Rally's sizeable European contingent to take centre stage.
The Euro Launch this year moved to a new highly secret location - the Klenova Military Base exactly 3.81 miles south-east of Janovice, Czech Republic. Mr. Buddy was flown in especially to be compere for the day. It should be noted that Buddy is in fact a seasoned Adventurists Veteran having hitchhiked the Mongol Rally in 2007 and taken on the Rickshaw Run for Wild Rides TV series. Adorning his trademark white suit with blue paint splodges, he took to the stage and off kicked the European Festival of Slow with a bellowing 'Welcome to the Mongol Rally!" so enthusiastic that two fainted through over-excitement and one doubled over with a suspected humour related hernier - they are all now fine.
After rousing the crowd into a drizzle defying horde it was time for the awards to be handed out. The award for 'Most Money Raised' went to Team Pandemonium who managed to whip together an astonishing $50,000. Good work chaps.
The award for 'Least Likely to Make it to Mongolia' went to Team Gold Strong mainly due to the fact that they couldn't even start their car to drive up onto the stage to receive their award and were henceforth pushed (see below photo). 'Biggest Fairies' went to Team 3D Goes Mongolia and 'Most Ludicrous Unnecessary Item' to Team Rat Pack for bringing not only a full size mannequin, cunningly named Manne Quin, but also a surf board. Wonderfully useless, top work.
Our ears were then graced with sumptuous sonorous twanging and sinewavicly smooth singing from some traditional Mongolian musicians followed by traditional Mongolian dancing.
This year we were fortunate enough to be in the presence of Mongolian wrestlers. One of the prizes for those lucky award winners was to partake in a spot of Mongolian wrestling. With cheering crowds, the Ralliers put up a fine fight (READ: no fight whatsoever) and with limbs flailing all over the place in the most uncomfortable of contortions, the victors? The Mongolians.
After a rather amusing parade lap in which the European teams drove up onto the stage and back down to the campsite again, the Ralliers' minds quickly turned to what was in store for them a little later on. A party like no other, the biggest bash in Bohemia (so the rumour mill says) - Czechout 2012.
At 6pm on the dotish, a precession led by musicians & dancers headed up a secret overgrown path to Klenova Castle. This marked the start of a night in which antics so exceptional no one will dare speak of them again. And that's where I'm off to now. Goodbye.
Afternoon in Pictures
Peruse the goings on of the Festival of Slow UK at Goodwood Motor Circuit in graphic form
Worlds Fastest Mobility Scooter
Eccentric English inventor Colin Furze graced us with his presence... oh, and his world record holdingly fast mobility scooter too.
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