Tackling the infamous ‘banger’ rally on 3 May will be no easy feat for Riverside Waste Machinery’s finance manager Susie Little, especially as she will spend the duration dressed as Thunderbirds’ Lady Penelope. But accompanied by her very own ‘Parker’ (friend Sean O’Malley) and travelling in a custom-modified version of FAB 1 – a now bright pink Mercedes E-class estate – Susie is taking this task very seriously.
Because whilst the event is set to be a huge adventure for the 100 cars taking part, the reason behind the mammoth Scumrun journey is to raise much-needed funds for children’s charity Sparks.
Sharing her thoughts about what she feels is a wonderful organisation, Susie explains: “Sparks champions vital research which helps reduce the health risks of premature birth, increase the life expectancies of newborn babies, and further the treatment of serious and life-limiting illnesses in children. They’ve ploughed £20 million into this crucial work so far, but there is more to be done.”
Susie experienced tragic loss in her close family last year when her beautiful niece Matilda died from a heart attack when she was only 28 hours old. Despite being treated by some of the best paediatric doctors in the world, Matilda died from the very rare condition ‘pneumo pericardium complicating respiratory distress syndrome’ – of which there are only 42 recorded cases globally, almost all of them fatal.
Determined to create a lasting memory of Matilda, self-confessed petrol head Susie has entered the rally under the poignant team name ‘Miles for Matilda’. Susie continues: “Having already raised a fabulous £5,865, we’ve been genuinely overwhelmed by the generosity of friends, family, colleagues and clients. It’s what we’re affectionately calling ‘the Matilda effect’.”
Riverside Waste Machinery has already pledged its support as a headline sponsor of Susie’s tremendous efforts. She continues: “Without this support Sean and I wouldn’t even be able to take part in the event, never mind work towards the significant fundraising target that we’ve set ourselves. The stark reality of the challenge is really hitting home – we literally don’t know where the route will take us from one day to the next – but the desire to do all we can to help this fantastic charity just keeps on getting stronger.”
This year’s ScumRun challenge commences on 3rd May at Thruxton Circuit in Hampshire. It will be officially launched by ex-racing driver and Fifth Gear presenter Tiff Needell, someone Susie is looking forward to meeting.
To support Susie and help raise money for Sparks in Matilda’s memory, please make a donation however small via www.justgiving.com/MilesforMatilda.