Cannonball men in charity challenge

TWO Harrogate men will be crossing four countries in 72 hours – and all in the name of charity.

Cannonball 8000 contestants Matthew Hornby and Alex Kirby will be taking the legendary trip, based on the 1981 movie of the same name, to raise cash for children’s charity, the NSPCC.

“We’ll be competing against millionaires in Ferraris and Lamborghinis,” said Matthew.

“The idea came from watching it on TV, and from our love of cars. We’re both into cars and this is a once in a lifetime thing. I’ll never be able to do this again in my life.”

During the first leg, the pair will join fellow contenders at Earl’s Court in London before heading off to Brussels. Leg two takes them to Prague while the third and final stretch will see them arrive in Budapest, just 72 hours after setting off.

And fundraising has begun before the wheels of their 500- horsepower Nissan Skyline have started turning.

Matthew and Alex have been drumming up money at car shows throughout the country and are also appealing for sponsors to have their name displayed on the car in return for donations.

“The response has been really, really great,” added Matthew.

“We’re still looking for sponsors, though, because the more support we get, the bigger the cheque we can hand over to the NSPCC at the end.

“We want to say thanks to everybody that’s helped towards getting us there already.

“Now we just need more people supporting us to get us back.”

Matthew and Alex have organised a fundraising night at the Ministry Of Sound Minibar in Harrogate tonight from 7pm to give revellers a chance to see the car, meet the promotional girls and speak to the drivers.

l Anyone interested in sponsoring the car can contact Matthew on