Over 200 teams in run-down, rough-as-guts cars have taken on a brutal seven day challenge through out-back Australia to raise money for Cancer Council.
The cars in the Rally that have made it, drove through Katherine today. Some stopping to refuel and, if time permits, grab a quick coffee.
Team mates Ben McCormack and Sam Hyson found their dependable $800 Toyota in NSW, which they say is “good for out bush”.
“We wanted something sturdy for the rough roads,” Mr McCormack said.
The drive for the cause is close to the boys who both lost close friends to cancer recently.
“Everyone is somehow effected by cancer and it is usually close to home,” Mr Hyson said.
When Mr McCormack lost his mum to cancer, the challenge through the out back became even more important.
“Giving breeds giving,” Mr Hyson said.
Mechanically, the close friends have been lucky.
Despite two flat tires in just a space of 100 metres with no spares, burning through four litres of oil and shocks blowing up, the toyota is going strong.
“Other teams have had it much worse than ours. We help each other out though, we can usually work it out within the buddy group,” Mr Hyson said.
“The challenge has made us more resilient. There have been a lot of unknowns.”
Travelling all the way from the Netherlands to participate in the Rally, Sarah bond and her partner James Bond are especially close to the Rallies cause.
Suffering from cancer herself, Ms Bond said supporting the Cancer Council is particularly significant.
“The trip has been difficult and hard to plan. My medication has to be kept in the fridge, which is difficult on the roads. I had to get clearance from doctors and I needed to feel good enough,” she said.
“But that is what this trip is about, overcoming huge challenges, like cancer.
“The support the Cancer Council provides is so important, like the wonderful phone lines.
“These are the services that helped me when I was sick.
“We need as much money as we can get put into research.
“More needs to be done in Australia to approve medicine for Cancer,” she said.
The couple have raised $6000 so far and Ms Bond said she is going to be okay.
Each team participating in the Rally had to raise at least $4000 to take part in the event.
Over the seven day challenge teams camp out in remote areas and tackle some of the roughest roads in an attempt to beat last year’s $1.67 million donation to cancer research.
The Rally finishes up in Darwin tomorrow where the cars will be auctioned off for a good cause.
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