Timehop is such a great way to remind you of all the great times you’ve had. This week i keep getting posts from when me and 8 friends went on a massive adventure in three cars across France and Spain to Valencia.

The Ramshackle Rally.

If you have ever participated in another banger rally then you’ll find Ramshackle refreshingly different. If you haven’t – then this is certainly the one to start with! It’s the birthplace of lunacy and the epitome of oddness where nothing ordinary is tolerated

Proudly the most imitated rallies on the European circuit, Ramshackle have been sending brave Ramshacklers off into the European countryside on hair brain missions since 2006. We’re the real deal baby! So.. what are you waiting for? Get yourself a Ramshackle posse, find a suitably inappropriate means of transport and sign up for 1500 miles worth of high jinx Ramshackle style.

And boy was it fun. We got three cars which we decided should look like the three little pigs houses, covered them in Straw, Sticks and Bricks. We spent weeks converting them into moving masterpieces, removing windows, covering holes, sticking on straw, painting gardens and working on engines, wheels and other mechanical parts.

The three little pigs houses and the big bad wolf (pretending to be a pig!
The three little pigs houses and the big bad wolf (pretending to be a pig!

Maps and road plans were made, Hostels booked and then we were off. Heading towards Valencia and La Tomatina, the ultimate food fight!

We start as usual in Calais in France before heading south taking in Annecy, San Remo, Perpignan and finally ending up in Valencia. That’s around 1450 miles through France, Italy, Monaco and Spain although there are always a few surprises!

Trusting in our bangers we were happy to get across town, trailing loose straw. Then to Dover, where we caught the ferry across and to the first first meeting point, Calais. Happily we meet up with the organisers and the many other participants to celebrate the first stage, collect our paperwork and maps and head onto our first nights accommodation. Not everyone made it that far a few people broke down and had to drop out in the early stages.

Other cars in the rally at the first stop.
Other cars in the rally at the first stop.

We started the next day jubilantly, all three cars still in working order.  Stage two was across France and into the alps heading towards Italy and the small town of Annecy where the second night meet up was to be held. I was in the house of straw car and we broke down on the this stage. We think the clutch went and had to call on the other cars for help. Luckily there was enough space in them to fit us all. Being the responsible citizens that we are, we sold our car to a french man for a euro, before jumping in the other cars and heading off to stop 2 in San Remo.

Stage three was then heading toward the Italian town of San Remo. We passed through Monaco on the way and of course had to do a quick drive round of the F1 road race track. when i say quick i really meant that each boy in our group wanted to drive the track so we had to wait while each car did three laps of the circuit. once they had had their fill of pretending to be race car drivers we headed off again . As we got closer to the night stop we started to get worried by the strange sound coming from the rear of our car. we drove as slowly as we could get away with and limped into the hotel for the night.

The next morning it turned out that the wheel nuts were to loose and if we had driven any further we would probably have lost the back wheel. Once that had been sorted we headed off towards Perpignan and through some of the beautiful south off France. The task for this stretch of the drive was to play car snooker. We had to take a picture of a red car followed by a colour (yellow, red, green, red, brown, red, blue, red, pink, red, black) making sure you had a piece of your car in the picture as well.

We arrived with no problems in Perpignan and the next day headed off to the end of the rally in Valencia. The final task was to take a picture of your team and the car in front of Oceanographic. You then can scrap your cars or drive them again. We had booked flights back so we took our cars to a scrap dealer the Rally uses. The boys took the cars for a top gear style trash around a dirt field nearby. throughout the rally we did use the top gear style method of stopping by crashing into the back of our lead car. It’s not often you have a car you can deliberately crash into and not worry about.

We stayed on for La Tomatina Festival and very early in the morning we got a bus to the edge of the festival and enjoyed some very cheap, warm sangria. We headed down into the festival and got into the best place we could before the lorries came through with thousands of tomatoes on. Then it went mental. I remember being squished at one point so hard i thought this was it. Once it was all over we staggered out and back up the hill.

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14 thoughts on “The Ramshackle Rally

  1. I just stumbled upon your blog but this is quite the adventure .. your traveling is worlds away from what I would ever give myself a chance to do, and yet this seems to be the kind of thing you live for! I very much appreciate you sharing and letting people at least read what’s out there and the adventure the world truly gives, if not travel themselves!!! Look forward to reading more of your stories!

    Liked by 2 people

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