It’s all Dutch to me as challenge arrives at M&D’s

Barry and Christina couldn't agree on how to decorate their car so one half ended up pink and the other blue.
Barry and Christina couldn't agree on how to decorate their car so one half ended up pink and the other blue.

More than 500 vehicles from The Netherlands arrived at M&D’s in Strathclyde Park last week on the final leg of this year’s Carbage Run.

The challenge, now in its seventh year, saw a convoy of vehicles bought for up to £500 decorated in all manner of crazy ways for the drive from Gorinchem to Aberdeen over the course of five days.

The winner wasn’t necessarily the first to reach Aberdeen as the competitors were set a number of tasks along the way, such as putting a dog in the car or finding a car from Top Gear in order to earn points.

Barry Boekema has been doing the Carbage Challenge for six years and admits he loves the social aspect.

He said: “I’ve done a few editions in the summer and a few in the winter, I had read about it in the newspapers and on Facebook and I decided I wanted to try it.

“It’s a nice experience, driving is just a little part of it, we get to see a new part of Europe every year, but really it’s the social aspect I enjoy.

“Every night we build a city wherever we stop and have a party and then it’s up again the next morning to discover something new, it’s a great way to live.

“There are all these crazy challenges we can do along the way, but they are not a priority for us, we just drive round, go to the pub, have a bite to eat and head to the finish place.”

Barry and his partner Christina Loonstra normally share driving duties although this arrangement changed due to the UK being out of step with the rest of Europe.

He said: “Normally we both take turns, but in the UK my wife doesn’t want to drive on the other side of the road, so I do it all as it feels a little bit safer.

“I’ve been in Scotland before, but it was my first time going to Aberdeen, it’s always nice to go somewhere new for a party.”

Riemke was in her first year taking part and has enjoyed the experience.

She said: “This is my first year, my friends wanted to do it, so I decided to come along as I’d heard good things about it.

“I have done a lot of travelling across Europe, although mostly in a better car, our vehicle for this journey wasn’t too reliable, but it got us here.

“We’ve really been too lazy to do the challenges, we’ve just been driving, but it’s been good fun and an adventure for sure.

“I was in Scotland when I was very little so I am very pleased to be back.”