“The downfall of the bigger cars was that they were forced to stop so often, so while they kept overtaking us, we eventually went past them at the next petrol station when they needed to fill up again.”

With only an ECU and suspension upgrade, the five-year-old, second-hand smart fortwo BRABUS of David Ward and Adrian Hull took victory in the Cannonball Run – a 3,000 mile dash across Europe inspired by the famous 80s film starring Burt Reynolds and Jackie Chan.

Contrary to popular belief, this Cannonball Run is not an illegal race which spans thousands of miles across numerous state and/or country borders. Instead it is a road rally where an average speed, in this case 61mph, is the target over a predetermined route. Despite the participation of numerous pavement scorching six-figure supercars, who gets there first is not the objective.

“The downfall of the bigger cars was that they were forced to stop so often, so while they kept overtaking us, we eventually went past them at the next petrol station when they needed to fill up again,” said David, who runs an estate agency in South Woodford. “We kept at a decent speed and still averaged around 35 miles per gallon.”

As first time participants, the run started in Sandown Park into France, Portugal and Spain with a finish in Brighton. Making David and Adrian’s victory even more miraculous was the fact that they were the only entrants without an in-car satellite navigation system, preferring a traditional European road map instead.

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