Early this morning What Car?, Autocar, Classic & Sports Car, Move Electric, and Car Accessory Trader (CAT) managing director Rachael Prasher and editorial director Jim Holder set off on their attempt to summit Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, fund-raising for automotive charity Ben.
According to the latest forecasts, during the 62km (38.525 mile), seven day trek along the Machame route to the top of the highest free-standing mountain on earth, the duo will face freezing temperatures, high altitude, brutal ascents and severe wind. The altitude at the summit of the volcano is 5895 metres.
“Starting today in the rainforest, full of excitement and energy and with the sun out, it’s important to keep a check on emotions and remember that days of rain and snow lie ahead,” said Prasher. “It’s going to be a gruelling seven days – five-and-a-half up, one-and-a-half down – and it’s clear from all the expert guidance we’ve received since we arrived in Africa that we need to preserve every ounce of energy ready for the gruelling summit night.”
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Prasher and Holder are part of a wider group of automotive industry heads raising money for Ben. The automotive charity provides mental health and physical health support for individuals and businesses within the industry. It estimates mental health is one of the biggest issues affecting the sector, and can cost the industry as much as £1.2 billion a year through absences, lack of productivity and staff turnover.
The pair will be joined on the challenge by James Tordoff and Andy Bateman (JCT600), Adrian Wallington and Clive McGregor (Marshall Motor Group), Leon Bosch (Partners &) and Joel Combes (Lawgistics), Neil Grant and Spencer Grinham (Hella), Andy Hamilton and Anthony McAteer (Euro Car Parts) and Zara Ross, Rachel Clift and Matt Wigginton (Ben). Earlier in the year, Prasher and Holder completed the Three Peaks challenge as part of the training for the Kilimanjaro expedition. The expedition will be led by Jason Rawles of Aspire Adventures.
The pair set off on November 21st, returning on November 29th.