109-year-old car performs faultlessly as Rainey conquers America

| 13 Jun 2013

Joy Rainey – who was travelling the 2826 miles from Los Angeles to Daytona Beach, USA on her curved-dash Oldsmobile – completed her trip last month.

Taking on the challenge in memory of her partner, Trevor Hulks, Rainey raised £20,000 for Cancer Research UK in process.

She announced: “After 31 days on the road and, I think, about 200 hours perched on the Oldsmobile holding the tiller steering (from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean), we have arrived.”

Having set off from Los Angeles, Rainey’s trip went on to take in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana and Florida.

After the first stage of her trek, week three meant leaving behind the sandstorms of Mexico and replacing them with the straight roads of Texas’ cattle country.

“The Olds kept chugging along as usual without missing a beat” she said. “She sure caused a sensation along the road when people wave and take photographs from their cars.”

On 2 May, Rainey covered 103 miles reaching her overnight stay in Shreveport, Louisiana.

The Olds managed an admirable pace with its pilot noting: “I started to think how lucky I am to be travelling at just 25mph as there is time to notice the wildlife and observe its behaviour, which wouldn’t be possible if we were whizzing past at 70mph.”

The tranquility of nature was swapped for high-octane motor sport on 4 May, when the team happened upon a dragstrip and was invited to take a run up the course.

The cold of the earlier part of the expedition was eventually traded for heat as the Olds chugged to the Gulf coast and the final stage of the trip.

From 7-13 May, Rainey would visit Pascagoula, Pensacola, Panama City, Tallahassee, Cross City, Astor and her final stop at Daytona Beach.

She said: “What is really standing out in my mind is that amazing Oldsmobile – it never missed one beat during the almost 3000-mile journey. It had every excuse considering the conditions it was put through – rough, pot-holed, corrugated, ghastly roads and steep-mountain declines.

“I have to say that the absolute reliability of this particular Olds was due to Trevor’s brilliant engineering expertise, plus the care and thought he put into the rebuild and preparation.”

Rainey’s partner was diagnosed with cancer just a few days after he finished preparing the car.

Find out more about Joy’s journey on her website.