Day 33: Troyes – Paris ( 190 km )

Setting off from the hotel this morning was a rather bitter-sweet moment. On the one hand we were excited to have made it this far, but on the other it was also the last day of what has been an absolutely amazing rally! Usually handing in our card at the morning time check was a moment of nerves, worried that you were accidentally checking in at the wrong time however today we were trying to make the moment last as long as possible.
The drive was not particularly unique with us spending a decent amount of it on the motorway, but it was a rather special moment driving into Paris, seeing the Eiffel Tower in the distance yet sitting in a car still covered in Mongolian dust. Right before the Arc de Triomphe we gathered and waited to be released into the Champs Elysées traffic in small groups. From here we drove the final stretch to the finish line located at the Place Vendome. As we were roughly in the middle of the pack many of the competitors and especially the pre war cars had already arrived at the finish. This made for a great atmosphere with everyone cheering for the cars!
We arrived around 13:30 but spent another three hours on the square, talking to the others, taking photos and reminiscing about the past five weeks. It really is a shame that the rally has come to an end and we both wish it would continue!! We aren’t ready yet for this experience, this trip that will forever be one of our highlights, to come to an end. Although it wasn’t always easy, and there were some rather tough moments we are both very happy that we decided to take part in the rally. We both can’t stop smiling and have most certainly aged a little as a result of it!
In the evening we had the closing, gala dinner where prizes were given and the 400 official photos viewed. Most competitors had their families join them for their arrival in Paris and we too had Catherine with us. The photos and the video of the rally helped to give her a sense of our journey but there is no way to adequately put into words the experiences that we have made along the way.
Our overall position is 14th, which is a little disappointing but it just means that we have to compete again in the next Peking Paris!! At the gala dinner Mario said that this will not be our last rally which I most certainly will be holding him to!!

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Categories: Uncategorized | 5 Comments

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5 thoughts on “Day 33: Troyes – Paris ( 190 km )

  1. Dan R. Luginbuhl

    NOELE & MARIO — BRAVO!!! OUTSTANDING!!! ENCORE!!! With our best wishes to all at Team Illien! Deb and Dan

    _____

  2. Bolsterli

    Noel and Mario
    Congratulations and thank you for sharing these past experiences with us.
    I have a great admiration for what you accomplished.
    Well done and I look forward to see you very soon.
    Best
    Hans

  3. Mike and Mavis Hall

    Many congratulations to ace driver/mechanic Mario and awesome blogger Noele.We have followed your epic drive ( from our armchairs) and it has been a wonderful experience for us.The only complaint is—what excitement will we have to look forward to now? so Noel please make sure that Mario keeps to his promise to do it all again.Fondest Good Wishes to both of you, and also to Catherine.From Mike and Mavis.

  4. Hey, die letzten Photos habe ich erst heute gesehen! Toll! Freue mich, euch wiederzusehn! Liebe Grüsse Martina

  5. Esther Ralph Liam Riley

    Super ihr zwei, toll gemacht. Wir Gratulieren ganz herzlich und freuen uns schon auf die vielen Details bei der nächsten Party. Liebe Grüsse Gmürs und Wernlis

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