Name: John Richard Dunn
To travel the length of Africa had been on Richard’s bucket list since he was only a wee laddy. Quite why he was so intent on doing this is even hard for him to describe but it was probably born of reading one too many adventure stories. Perhaps Wilbur Smith is to blame.
In any case, what gave him the conviction to actually attempt this expedition was the success of previous mini-adventures:
After leaving school, Richard had his eyes opened to the benefits of combining adventure travel with hands-on charity work when he signed up for Enduro Africa. This was a 2,000km dirt-bike rally down the Wild Coast of South Africa in which he raised £5,000 for 4 charities and, along the way, had the incredible opportunity to help rebuild Mgcawezulu school with the other 90 riders.
The charities were: UNICEF, The Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, Sentebale – The Princes’ Fund for Lesotho and Touch Africa. Four great charities lending their hands to four important causes.
Fortunately, immediately after this trip Richard was able to spend some time travelling with Duncan so these two know how to deal with each other’s smelly feet after a few weeks on the road!
Thinking he’d never have the time to do it later in life, Richard signed up to the Mongol Rally in the summer of 2011 with team mates Philip Long and Charley Hibbert. This 10,000mile banger rally from London to Mongolia took the team through some extraordinary countries (the three favourites being Iran, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan) in their trusty D’Artagnan (a 2001 Vauxhall Corsa).
Not only did the team manage to complete the rally, a feat in itself given that usually only 50% of participants finish, but they also managed to raise over £1000 for the fantastic charities Scottish Love in Action and Christina Noble Children’s Foundation. A short film of the trip can be seen here.
With these trips under his belt, the lessons learned and the experiences gained, Richard reckoned that the Gents had a sterling chance of reaching Cape Town on all four wheels and, hopefully, doing some good along the way. As it turned out, he wasn’t wrong!