In­dian Rick­shaw Run ‘a lit­tle bit in­sane’


Trav­el­ling thou­sands of kilo­me­tres through a for­eign coun­try jam-packed with more than a bil­lion peo­ple and with no idea where you’re go­ing sounds chal­leng­ing right?

Try nav­i­gat­ing it in an au­torick­shaw.

That’s what Queen­stown­ers Ash­ley Robb and part­ner Holden Brower, both 23, will do along with more than 200 oth­ers from Au­gust 11.

The pair will be joined by Brower’s brother, 25-year-old Iowa na­tive Kel­lan, for The Rick­shaw Run, a 15-day trek across In­dia in the pre­ferred mode of trans­port for many in the sub­con­ti­nent.

Robb, speak­ing from the heart of Old Delhi on Tues­day, says she was in­spired to do the Ad­ven­tur­ists’ char­ity event af­ter see­ing Youtube clips of oth­ers mak­ing the jour­ney.

‘‘It was pretty easy to con­vince the boyfriend, but re­mark­ably hard to find a third team mem­ber,’’ she says.

‘‘There’s no set route, no backup, and the only con­di­tion is that we get the rick­shaw to the fin­ish line ... no mat­ter what con­di­tion it’s in.’’

The race starts from Fort Cochin at the bot­tom of In­dia and heads north 3500km to Jaisalmer all with the aim of rais­ing money for Cool Earth, a char­ity pro­tect­ing na­tive forests.

The trio - Team Tuk Me Gen­tly - hope to raise $1000 for the char­ity. They also needed about $1000 each to en­ter the event.

Robb, who runs AM Eques­trian near Ar­row­town, says she’s most wor­ried about find­ing a place to stay each night and be­ing a ‘‘white woman’’ in a de­vel­op­ing coun­try de­spite it be­ing her third trip to In­dia.

The Rick­shaw break­ing down on some very dodgy roads in the mid­dle of no-where is a very dis­tinct pos­si­bil­ity too, she says.

‘‘None of us know a sin­gle thing [about rick­shaws]. We will learn a fair bit in the three days of prep be­fore hand but mostly we will need to use some good old Kiwi in­ge­nu­ity and some rolls of duct tape.

‘‘Rick­shaws are in­cred­i­bly com­mon­place in In­dia so spare parts and a lo­cal me­chanic shouldn’t ever be too far away.

‘‘It will be amaz­ing to be right in the thick of it and re­ally ex­pe­ri­ence the cul­ture, rather than stay­ing in hos­tels and only see­ing the tourist trail. ‘‘

The team plan to film the whole jour­ney and have set up a Face­book page.


Queen­stown­ers Ash­ley Robb and Holden Brower in In­dia.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.