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Look out Jodie... CHALLENGE: Rod shuns glamour for 'Scumball Rally' ...cos here we come.

Byline: By Chris Henwood

ROD Parsons' new venture couldn't be further away from the glamorous world of the Gumball Rally where supermodels Jodie Kidd and Caprice spin the wheels of Ferraris and Porsches.

Because the 47-year-old Brummie was today setting off from Calais to take on all-comers in cars worth no more than pounds 500, in the Scumball Rally.

And the dad-of-three is well within the rules as his 20-year-old Ford Dorchester funeral car was bought on ebay for just pounds 400.

But it's all for a good cause, with Rod and co-driver John Hurley, 35, of Perry Common, having raised around pounds 1,000 for the rally's nominated charity, Whizz Kids.

"I fancied doing it and I'm not old enough to know better, but the money's for a good cause and it's just a bit of fun really," said Rod, who runs Moor Lane chauffeur and limousine business Home James.

"I can't imagine for one minute we'll win, it's not the fastest of vehicles, but the rally's not like that. It's more about taking part."

The Birmingham duo will share driving duties as they make their way along 1,000 miles of European roads, returning to Calais in four days.

The route remains a mystery for the 250 Scumballers in their 80 cars until the morning of the day's rallying, when a nighttime destination is issued.

"I've never done anything like this before," added Rod.

CAPTION(S):

CONTRASTS... Jodie Kidd at the Gumball Rally and (below) John Hurley (left) and Rod Parsons with the joke coffin limousine they are taking on the 'Scumball Rally'. Picture: John Reavenall; Photo ref: JR150408Limo-9
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Apr 17, 2008
Words:271
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