Three friends from Co Kildare are undertaking final preparations as they get set to take part in a 10,000 mile journey as part of the Mongol Rally to raise funds for the Irish Cancer Society.
Good friends Cian Rea, Paddy Kavanagh and John Finn are taking on the Mongol Rally this July in their 2002 Nissan Micra 'Audrey' to raise much needed funds for The Irish Cancer Society. The lads are going by their Team name of 'Mon-We-Golia'.
Cian is in his final year studying an ME in Engineering with Business at UCD, Paddy is a graduate of DIT working as an Architectural Technologist and John is studying engineering also at UCD.
The three friends are all aged 23 and have been friends since childhood, also having attended secondary school together at Newbridge College. The Mongol Rally is an international charitable rally which involves driving 10,000 miles from Prague to Mongolia in a 1 litre engine car, with thousands of participants coming from across the globe.
The three friends have set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for the Irish Cancer Society and to cover costs associated with the journey, and their planned route is through Europe, Iran and all the 'Stans' countries then on to Mongolia.
Speaking to KildareNow, Cian Rea explained that the rally will officially launch on July 22 in Prague, Czech Republic, and the three friends will leave Ireland on 18 July by ferry over to France where they will then drive on to Prague to make it in time for the launch.
The three friends are currently searching for camping gear and food to bring with them on their exciting journey and have said that 'Audrey' is almost ready to go with a brand new set of wheels and other adjustments.
"We came up with the idea for the Mongol Rally when I saw a video about it on Youtube a couple of years ago. I thought it looked bonkers and the three of us are going to give it a go," explained John.
The lads will travel from Prague on to Turkey, Israel, Iran, Russia and then to finish in the Mongolian capital of Ulaan Baatar with the finish line to remain open until September 16. "We still have five more passports to get but being from Ireland makes entry into other countries a little easier. And the rally group are very supportive and have said they will help us out if we need anything,"said Cian.
"At the moment we're getting food and camping gear ready, like a tent. We've raised almost €2,000 through the GoFundMe page and we're having a launch party in Newbridge Rugby Club next Saturday June 29,"said Paddy.
The lads' chosen charity is the Irish Cancer Foundation, a cause close to their hearts.
The three friends have spent several months preparing 'Audrey' for the journey, and they are hoping to raise €7,500 which is made up of €5,000 directly for charity and the remainder to cover the expenses. If they don't use all of the remaining €2,500 it will be given directly to The Irish Cancer Society.
"We want to emphasise that any money not spent in this regard will be fed straight back to the charity. Any and all donations, big and small will be greatly appreciated and will go a long way. We're really excited for the rally, it's something we've wanted to do for years and hopefully we'll get a bit of support from the people of Kildare before we set off," said Cian.
The three friends from Co Kildare are hoping to finish the rally within 6 weeks of the launch and for more information and to donate check out the GoFundMe page and all are welcome to the launch party on June 29 in Newbridge Rugby Club, Rosetown, Co Kildare, at 7pm.
There will be a BBQ at 7pm, followed by a table quiz at 8pm then a DJ until late and much more on the night and entry is €10 per person and it's sure to be a great send-off for the lads!