DRIVING seems to get continually more stressful.
There are more cars on - and more holes in - our roads every year.
But local man John Irving and friend Paul Fox will this summer be setting out on a car journey to end all car journeys, where holes in the roads are a blessing.
A lack of road at all is the concern!
The two students are taking part in a huge charity fund-raiser, the Mongol Rally.
The rally is like no other. It begins in London's leafy-green Hyde Park in mid-July.
But from there, its a sweltering, bone-shaking 8,000 mile trek through mountain and desert crossing at least 13 countries, finishing in Ulaan Baatar, the capital of Mongolia.
A huge fully equipped 4x4 monster would surely be the vehicle of choice, for they will be crossing some of the most inhospitable terrain in the world.
Yet the Mongol Rally must be completed in a car with an engine of 1 litre or less.
They are likely to go for an old Fiat Panda with four-wheel drive.
John and Paul have named their team Adventure Capitalists, and John really sees this as a once in a lifetime adventure.
"It's going to be a major challenge" said John, a former Salendine Nook High School pupil.
"I am combining a few aims with this. I'd like to help charity, travel the world, and have a true adventure, and this is definitely an opportunity to conquer all three convincingly.
"There are not that many major independent travel opportunities for charity, but this is perfect."
John is now a student at Bristol University, having taken his A-levels at Greenhead College, and over recent years has done plenty of routine maintenance and repairs on cars.
But replacing a cylinder head gasket in the Gobi desert would surely be a challenge for the most hardened experienced mechanic?
"Luckily Paul is more experienced than me. We will get the car completely overhauled before we depart, but we know we will break down at some point, or points," said John.
They plan to travel with a full complement of tools and spare parts, as well as a Haynes workshop manual.
Over 100 teams have signed up so far, and all have to find their own way.
The Adventure Capitalists are hoping to make use of old Russian Military maps, and are spending a lot of time in specialist map shops at the moment.
The Mongol Rally is expected to raise over £250,000 for a variety of charities.
John and Paul have nominated Cancer Research UK and Mercy Corps as their chosen charities.
Mercy Corps exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression in disaster and conflict hit areas.
The agency's programs currently reach 7 million people in more than 35 countries.
The Rally begins on July 22 and is expected to take about 3 weeks. For further information or to sponsor the team, visit www.london2mongolia.com