Breakdowns,h0,000 miles Mongolia

MISSION Ian Prickett from Gosport with his converted ambulance. Inset, when it broke down.

MISSION Ian Prickett from Gosport with his converted ambulance. Inset, when it broke down.

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ADVENTURERS raised thousands of pounds for charity after tackling a gruelling 10,000-mile rally in an old ambulance.

Ian Prickett and three friends took part in the Mongol Rally – a dangerous trek across a third of the earth’s surface.

MISSION The converted ambulance when it broke down.

MISSION The converted ambulance when it broke down.

Leaving from the Goodwood racecourse near Chichester in July, it took them months to reach the Mongolian capital, Ulan Bator.

They dealt with engine failures, hostile border guards and treacherous mountain passes in their ambulance, named Christine.

Ian, 33, of Rothesay Road, Gosport, said: ‘We have raised over £6,000 for two amazing charities and had a blast and seen some amazing sights along the way.

‘Christine was on especially good form considering the roads we have encountered on the trip.

‘The first day in Mongolia we snapped our front left shock absorber and the other three were actually shot as well.

‘At one point we hit a big rock on the road as another car was passing and it smashed the oil filter housing.

‘We lost all our oil and spent the evening using tin cans, football bladders, tie wraps and jubilee clips to fashion a repair.’

With 700 miles to go until the nearest repair shop, the team had to drive carefully until they could reach Karagandy Province in Kazakhstan for new parts.

The whole journey took Ian and his friends, who all work for the British Antarctic Survey in Antarctica, through Europe, then Turkey, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia and Mongolia.

They donated the ambulance to the Mongolian authorities at the end of the trip.

Of the £6,500 they raised in sponsorship for the trip, £1,200 will go to the Christina Noble Children’s Foundation.

The rest will be given to Orchid, a charity devoted to cancers which affect men.

When they arrived in the Mongolian capital, Ian and the others were given a tour of a children’s camp run by the Christina Noble Foundation.

He added: It was great to see how all our money for the orphanage is being used.

‘It was amazing spending a few hours playing with all the kids.’

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