The team have transformed a 1999 silver Cadillac into the ultimate rally car, the Cure It Caddie. Vehicles entered should cost less than £500 or been on the road for 20+ years, the Cure It Cadillac ticks both boxes and has been wrapped in Cure It colours to stand out as it travels along the autobahn in Germany.
The five day challenge will see the Cure It Cadillac take on the epic road trip through Europe.
Over 50 teams from across the UK will meet on the starting line in St Omer, France hoping that their ride will get them to the finish line in Venice. During the five day challenge, the Cure It Cadillac will travel though France, Belgium and Germany before arriving in Italy. Highlights of the road trip include a tour through the German Alps, testing the Cadillac on the 60 hairpin bends of the gargantuan Stelvio pass and driving the second highest paved mountain road in the Alps (at a huge 2758 metres).
We’ll be posting daily updates as the Cure It Cadillac travels through Europe.
Day 1 – St Omer (France) – Koblenz (Germany)
After successfully navigating the trip up to Hull for the overnight ferry, the Cure It Cadillac was ready and well prepared on the start line (so the team thought) for the first day of the Motorscape Rally.
After the morning briefing, the plan was to get from St Omer to Koblenz, a 290 mile trip taking in the scenery of three countries (France, Belgium and Germany). The team decided to take a more scenic route and head through Ardennes forest. The weather might have been wet and windy but the rolling hills, flowing rivers and never ending forest made for a relaxing drive in the comfort of the Caddy (complete with five disc CD changer).
The stop for Belgium Waffles had to be scrapped when the Cadillacs power steering failed, this was then followed by another mystery leak (yet to be identified and could well be an issue later in the week). A brief stop followed and the team drew straws to decided who would take on the role of team mechanic.
Team Cure It were back on the road and on their way to complete a few laps of the Nurburgring ring, but not before following the wrong car and taking the wrong exit from the motorway (luckily the team realised their mistake after a couple of miles and didn’t end up following it to the Netherlands!). Arriving at the famous racing circuit, teams from the rally took the opportunity to put peddle to the metal and test their cars around the 12.9 mile circuit. Not all the teams were successful in navigating the track and the Cure It Caddy gained an extra team member as a fellow driver needed to hitch a ride.
The end of day 1 was in sight and after completing the first 290 miles of the road trip, all the teams gathered at the Winningen Winzerfest, an annual wine festival just outside Koblenz for the evening of fine wine and a fireworks display.
Will the mysterious leak under the bonnet return tomorrow, how many hitchhikers can you fit in a Cure It Cadillac and will the team make it to the next checkpoint without getting lost? Stay tuned for the report from day 2…..
Day 2 – Next Stop Garmisch-Partenkirchen
After a hearty breakfast and the morning briefing, Team Cure It made the final checks to the Caddy. The bonnet was popped (although they weren’t too sure what they were looking for) and a quick inspection underneath revealed few surprises as the team prepared for day 2.
Today was a long drive, 340 miles to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, the most famous resort in the German Alps. Team Cure It were ready to hit the road and had a more scenic route planned out to reach their destination.
Garmisch-Partenkirchen lies at the foot of the Zugspitze, Germany’s highest mountain, and hosted the Winter Olympics way back in 1936. As the team got closer to their destination, they were greeted with some breathtaking views of the snow covered mountain tops.
The Cure It Cadillac made good progress on day 2 and the team made a pit stop at Neuschwanstein Castle. Known as the fairytale castle, Neuschwanstein is located in Bavaria, near the town of Fussen. It was built by King Ludwig II of Bavaria, also known as the “Fairytale King”.
With day 2 complete, thoughts quickly turned to the possibilities of what could happen on day 3. The famous Stelvio pass could be impassible tomorrow with the bad snow fall.
Will Team Cure It have to fit a snow plough to the Cadillac, will they have to ski through the alps or will they decide to live in the fairytale castle forever! Come back soon for day 3 as the adventure continues…
Day 3 – Taking on the Alps
After yesterdays long drive, the team woke up refreshed and ready to face any challenge that day 3 would throw at them. The hot topics at the morning briefing was snow and road closures (taking on the famous Stelvio Pass was not looking possible).
Announcements and updates were being made throughout the morning as roads and passes were declared open, then closed and then reopened. The Stelvio Pass was officially declared impassible, but the Jaufen Pass was open to be tamed by the Cure It Cadillac. The Jaufen Pass is a high mountain pass in the Alps (South of Tyrol in Italy). The hairpin bends were no issue for the Caddy as it climbed the 2094m road, snaking up through the alps. The views were breathtaking and Team Cure It had no issues making it to the summit. The Cadillac was so impressive cruising up the climb that it is now known as the land barge (it was like driving a couch!).
As teams gathered at the summit and took in the views, Team Cure It were just as excited to drive the ‘couch’ down into Italy. The drive down posed no problems and the brakes held solid as the team ended the day in the city of Rovereto in Northern Italy. Day 3 had been a huge success with three countries conquered (Germany, Austria and Italy), taking in the impressive views along the Jaufen Pass, and the Cure It Cadillac driving like a dream. Next stop Venice!
Day 4 – The Road to Venice
The team were greeted with blue sky and sunshine for the final day of the rally. The final day was a comparatively short driving day and the Cure It Cadillac had plenty of time to make a stop along Italy’s largest lake, Lake Garda, where the team took a quick dip in the crystal clear (but cold) water.
The Caddy arrived at its final destination San Dona’ di Piave. Having travelled over 1,500km in four days, through five countries and and making new friends along the way, the team enjoyed the evening meal and prize giving. A fitting finale to their European adventure!