It’s a funny thing having to set off from your home on a journey lasting over 2 months and in the case of Alpha Squad and “Mickey” the Micra, some 18’000 miles including the return trajectory through Russia. Even with the practice packing we did a couple of days before, setting up for the final pack was even more challenging. With hearts and minds set on Goodwood we set off – leaving key kit behind in classic team fashion. A quick stop off at Halfords later to buy Eurolites for the headlamps, and a charger port adapter then we were off.
Heading down to Goodwood quick saw the demise of our first piece of kit – the tarpaulin. Having found its way out of the ratchet straps, it then ballooned out down the motorway and once the first thread gave way, the whole thing ripped itself apart. We’ve kept it was sake of some (see- not very much) protective cover as the rally unfolds.
Arriving at Goodwood at ~7pm, we found ourselves a nice spot for the tent, and with a quick fix to one of the tent poles we set up for the night and had a walk round to meeting and greet with the other ralliers. Some key pointers included *not* purchasing the Carnet de Passage through the tour guide recommendations or 3rd parties, instead just purchasing at the Iranian border. Also the sheer amount of kit that people never used – the veteran teams there were quick to note what was and wasn’t essential.
Walking over to the main base of operations on the site, we quickly discovered that registration was long since passed (closing long before we even arrived). We had to instead get up for crack of dawn for morning registration and make sure we were cleared for the rally start. With that, we headed to bed, and did our best to find comfort in the humidity.