Saturday, 10 February 2018

Run the Ring VW Charity Cruise 2017 - Bonus review with a guest author.

This weeks blog review is a bonus instalment all about the Run the Ring charity cruise written by my good mate Rich Coxhill, who runs The Wolfsburg Bus Crew. (you can check out the WBC facebook page here)
When Rich found out that I was writing a blog review about this event he sent me lots of great photos to use. Rather than just publish his photos and take the glory for his great photos I thought it would be good to ask Rich if he wanted to add some text to his photos and let him take the glory. So that's what he has done. This is the first time since I started writing the blog in 2011 that I have had a guest author, but who knows it may become a regular thing. Anyway what is this event, Rub the Ring all about.?
This is the 2nd 'Run the Ring VW Charity cruise', which saw over 700 Volkswagens of all descriptions cruise the 117 miles clockwise around the London orbital motorway, the M25. The original idea to cruise around the M25 came from a guy called John Emberton. John put a post on Facebook suggesting the idea and the response was incredible so John thought if this was to happen why not raise money for a charity at the same time. In 2016 the first RTR took place where just over 400 VW's both air cooled and water cooled assembled at the 4 designated service stations around the M25 and cruised around the M25 creating an amazing sight. In 2016 RTR raised just over £10,000 for the chosen charity, The Teenage Cancer Trust. In 2017 there were around 700 Volkswagens that took part (660 actually registered, but we estimate there were about 100 that just turned up on the day) and raised an incredible £25, 758.39 for the charity 'Scotty's Little Soldiers'. You can check the VW M25 Run the Ring Facebook page here:
I have taken part in both these charity cruises and although to some the thought of driving 117 miles around the M25 (known as the biggest car park in Britain) doesn't sound that appealing, they have both been really enjoyable. The atmosphere at the services both before the cruise and after is amazing, you can mingle and chat to other VW owners and take plenty of photos. As I did in 2016 I met up with friends of mine David and Angela, who are both from my hometown for the short cruise over to Hemel Hempstead where we had arranged to meet other VW owners before heading for the services on the M25.  A huge well done to John and Amanda (and all the other people who helped to organise this event who I don't know about) and a big special thanks and well done to the hundreds and hundreds of people who participated and who made this memorable event happen. You can find out more about the worthwhile charity that this event was all about here:
To see more than 400+ photos of some of the vehicles that took part in the charity cruise, check out this awesome photo album from Ed Baylis that captured the essence of the charity cruise:
To see all my other blog entries, go to ‘My Blog Archive’ to the left of this page. Simply click on an arrow for a particular year, then click on an arrow for a particular month, this will then give you a drop down menu for all the blog entries for that month.

The following photos and text are from my good buddy Rich Coxhill who runs the Wolfsburg Bus Crew... over to you Rich!

Before I start I would just like to say a huge thank you to Dave and James who both offered me a ride round the ring in their bus, I had recently had surgery on my foot and wasn't able to drive. I was gutted about this as I had really been looking forward to running the ring again and I couldn't think of nicer buses and people to cruise round the M25 with, so thanks for the offer guy's. I will be running the ring in Margo (my late bay Westy) for sure on Sunday 23rd September this year no matter what!

James Thorburn cleaning the fresh road kill off
of the windscreen's of 'Duke' ready for action.
(Dave Clark's awesome early bay in the back-
ground, I really love this bus!)

The calm before the storm... everyone is stocking
up on coffee and going for a last minute comfort
break (including the dogs!) so they aren't caught
short half way round the ring.

James Thorburn and Dave Clark's buses parked
top to tail. The Ducati anniversary red and the
velvet green buses looked great together.

I really dig Dave's bus, to me everything on it is
right! The colour, deluxe trim, roof rack, stance
and the wheels! It just looks awesome.

Stickers that you will always see together, the
Wolfsburg Bus Crew will always support 'Run the
Ring' and the amazing fund raising they do for 

such great causes!

Great view from inside the Duke. All ready to
Run the Ring.

Just before we set off James was informed that
he was the lead vehicle.. for the WHOLE of the
Run the Ring! Suddenly the pressure was on...
We were all in good spirits and I really enjoyed
rolling with James, Andrea, Caitlin and Archie
(their well behaved puppy, who can't be seen in
this photo as he was lying down in his bed) 

There's a familiar rear with a sparkly Wolfsburg
Bus Crew sticker sparkling in the Sun! Fiona
Coad and her lovely 1963 split screen named
'Yucky Doo Dah' were just ahead of us.

One of my favourite shots of the day, Dave pulling
off the M25 for a comfort break. This shot was taken
through one of 'Dukes' rear windows and those bars
you can see are are grenade bars. The Duke was
formally a Swiss army radio communications bus, and
the reason the bus was sprayed Ducati anniversary
red and has the Ducati sign writing on the doors is
because the original radio communication systems
 inside were made by Ducati.

My view out the back of the Duke for a lot of the
way round the M25 was this awesome buggy!
I always wanted one when I was younger and
had always dreamed of driving one across the

numerous sand dunes on Camber Sands beach 
in East Sussex.

Oh, there's Archie! That bench seat is the perfect
size for 3!  James is concentrating on keeping to
a regular steady slow speed (without causing an
obstruction) to keep as much of the convoy as
 as possible together as we Run the Ring. He
did an amazing job.!

There he is the man himself, John Emberton
(who's idea it was to run the ring) who was 
approaching the finish at South Mimms Services 
with a BIG smile on his face.

James's and Susie Perrin's split screen buses
just chilling next to each other after completing
'Run the Ring 2017'.

A thumbs up for Scotty's Little Soldiers mascot.

The Duke and Lulu, the pair look great together.
I sense a romance is brewing!

You've got to love a sage green Westy!

Ahhh, Here is a WBC member Mark Lorentzen's
awesome '69 early bay. This bus has such a great

All the various VW buses parked up at South
Mimms Services, just cooling down and chilling
out after running the ring. We were lucky and had
some fantastic weather for the event.

A lovely subtle shade of green on this beautiful
early bay westy.

Ahh, here is another WBC members bus, Richard
Bell's lovely orange late bay Westfalia called
Magic, named for Richard's love of the band
'The Who'. Richard was one of the Wolfsburg
 Bus Crew's first members.

Wow! What a line up!

Awesome greens and white side by side, spot on.

I really digged this T25 Auto Sleeper. It had a
really fresh look about it and the white wall tyres
and the brown stripes really set it off. Loved it!

Great rear ends! These buses were having a
well deserved rest.

A cool pastel white Westfalia Continental.!

WBC member Stuart Rigg's lovely split screen
bus parked alongside it's younger bay brothers.

The South Mimms car park provided some great
colour combinations!

I was intrigued by this lovely straight split screen
bus, I hung around hoping to meet the owner, but
sadly didn't manage to meet the them to find out
more about this gorgeous bus.

The red piped deluxe trim really sets off the two
tone colour combination perfectly.

Bay window buses side by side in the sunshine.

Another WBC member Chris Cavill just coming
back into the services in his awesome Caravelle
called 'Arturo' having just run the ring.

The only way to stop your bus getting stone chips
on its nose is a bus bra, and when the spare wheel
comes off the front of my bus I will definitely be
getting one for sure.

This 'Viking' was a very straight looking bus and
I was amazed when I looked back a few times
on the way round the ring, to see the owners
poodle sitting on the seat. I honestly thought
the dog was driving on a couple of occasions.

WBC members David and Kelly Britton's awesome
Reimo T25.

These two bugs certainly brightened things up
at South Mimms Services.

I really liked this late bay, it reminded me of my
Westy Continental, Margo. Even the two tone
colour combination was so close to mine.

This lovely T25 Atlantic belongs to Mark Cooper
who is a WBC member. I do love an Atlantic! If
I was to own a T25 Westy it would definitely be
an Atlantic. Class Bus!

Sage green VW Westfalia Berlin, Lovely bus!

A freshly stuck on WBC sticker onto Arturo
Cavill's awesome '84 Caravelle.

James (on the left) and myself at the end of long
but very enjoyable day Running the Ring 2017.
Same time, same place this year.. roll on 23rd
September 2018, are you going to join us??

Well done Rich, fantastic photos and a great write up.
I hope all my regular readers across the world have

enjoyed reading Rich's personal account of this fantastic
charity cruise as much as I have. Many thanks for being 
the first guest author of my blog, I'm impressed just how 
good it was, you never know I may be asking you to 
write another blog, possibly one that involves the WBC!
Don't forget to visit the 'VW M25 Run the Ring' face-
book page and sign up for this years Run the Ring
when registration opens on March 1st.
Next week's blog review is a three part review all
about the Brighton Breeze VW show, so be sure
to come back next Saturday.

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