Vintage Ford sets new world record for crossing the USA


Aussie Rod Wade has set his world record at the second attempt and crossed the USA in a 1930 Ford Model A in an incredible 50 hours, 20 minutes and six seconds.

Wade and co-driver Michael Flanders started their epic 3000-mile journey at Staten Island at midnight on 22 November and ended the challenge at Venice Fishing Pier just over two days later by pouring a bottle of Atlantic Ocean water into the Pacific.

The task was by no means easy. With Wade and Flanders' first attempt at the record in October coming to an end with crank failure near Amarillo, this time around they battled through horrendous storms and freezing rain, fog and snow.

At one point the team was having to stop every two miles to scrape the ice of the windscreen, but despite the adverse conditions they soldiered in and officially arrived at 11.15pm on Saturday 23 November.

After completing the task, Wade: “I can’t believe we got here in such a good time. It got scary through Amarillo again but we battled on. If it wasn’t for the weather conditions, we would have done it on 40’odd hours. Maybe next time!”

Wade has already decided on the next epic for the Vintage Adventurer team – Ocean to Ocean again, but this time in his native Australia in June, driving from Queensland to Freemantle and then making the return journey.

The reason for setting the World record was to raise awareness and funds to support kidney disease suffers all over the world.

And the Model A, nicknamed Tudor Rose, wasn't the only record-breaker, because in following the Ford across the continent its support vehicle, a 1988 retired Plymouth police car, set a new best for a post-war car.

The support crew was made up of Ricardo Da Cruz as lead mechanic/photographer, Arron Hage from Australia’s Network 7, UK media manager Andrea Seed and, unsurprisingly after the dramas of the first attempt, an engine builder in the form of Ora Landis from Schwalms.

For our previous stories on the Vintage Adventurers click here or here.

For more on the team and the charities click here.

More photos.




It was done in under 33 hours in 1979 by a Jaguar XJS, so I can't see that the Plymouth won anything!


Another guy just did it in 28hrs 50 minutes driving a bedpan... in a Mercedes. However, I am much more impressed by this record in a Model A.

Larry Brantingham

James Elliott

Looks like the support car actually set the post-war record for a 1988 ex-police Plymouth, then!

Group Editor, C&SC

Don Callum

Basketballl player Wilt Chamberlain claimed he used to regularly cross the USA in 36 hours in his Bentley in the late 60's.

The Ford though is very impressive.

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