Pair launch 2,500-mile rally for Gosport girl

Ash Moore (left), with Alicia Pannell and Alex Brown
Ash Moore (left), with Alicia Pannell and Alex Brown
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TWO friends are driving 2,500 miles in a bid to raise cash for a disabled girl.

Ash Moore and Alex Brown have modified an Audi A4 saloon and are due to leave Gosport at midnight tonight to drive across Europe.

The pair are raising cash for 11-year-old Alicia Pannell, of Gosport, who suffers from cerebral palsy.

Her family are fundraising to install a lift at their home in Parker Close, Elson.

Ash, of Bridgemary, is looking forward to setting off.

The pair are travelling with a group of 33 people in 16 cars from across the country.

He said: ‘It’s more of a run, a group of people together.

‘We got a car for no more than £600 and did it up with stickers. We’re meeting at Dover and travelling around Europe and we’ve got little challenges to do.’

They are due to leave Gosport tonight for Dover and will return to England on July 8 or 9.

Alex added: ‘It’s going to be a challenge. We’ve already raised quite a bit of money.’

Both are used to driving for long periods of time as they worked together as incident support unit drivers for the Highways Agency.

After Dover, their next stop will be Dunkirk in France, followed by a stopover at the Nurburgring in Germany.

There the pair will race their car on the track.

From Germany they will head to Thun in Switzerland, followed by Turin in Italy, the south of France and then arrive in Spain in time for the bull run in Pamplona.

The duo will wrap it up by driving through France to catch a ferry home.

Ash added they are supporting Alicia’s fund after his wife Louise, 29, looked after her.

Both he and Louise have been to Alicia’s fundraising events before.

As previously reported, Alicia’s family need to raise £32,000 for the lift and extension at their home. The lift is needed so Alicia can sleep upstairs.

Her mum Sharon, 39, said: ‘To be truthful we were gobsmacked that they’d even thought of choosing Alicia.

‘It’s a massive help. We were speechless.’

‘We need the extension and we’ve now had planning permission.’

Alicia even got to look at the car that’s due to go around Europe with Alex and Ash when they visited her home.

For more and to donate, see the family’s website.