The 2016 Peking – Paris Rally – interview of Ingo Strolz and Werner Gassner
Imagine driving from Beijing to Paris in a 99 year old American-built speedster with a top speed of 150 km/h. The adventure that pilot Ingo Strolz and co-pilot Werner Gassner are experiencing on this amazing race across Asia and Europe.
With only a few days left of what is arguably the hardest classic race in the world, these two Chopard fans had the chance to sit down with us to talk rallying and watches.
Here is their interview.
When did you have the idea to participate at the Peking – Paris Rally and what did inspire you to participate?
Seven years ago, I heard from friends of this great event. I started immediately with the research on the internet. From the beginning on I was so impressed and decided that I want to do that. I looked for the right car and a co-driver. I did the Rallye Peking Paris the first time in 2013 with the same car than this year and the same co-pilot, Werner Gassner. It was the biggest challenge of my life and a very valuable experience.
Which is the hardest challenge during the race with your America La France Tourer 1917?
It is the Gobi desert and Mongolia, because of the very rough tracks. There are practically no streets, only sandy tracks and you have to have a good navigator. My co-pilote Werner is a good navigator. Besides that, he is mechanic and I wouldn´t be able to do the race without him. Each night we are doing repairs and maintenance on the car.
You are wearing a Chopard GTS Chronograph – which are the conditions that the watches go through?
Timing is very important during that race, during day and night. One of the features we will need is good visibility during the night, this is provided with the Mille Miglia GTS Chronograph. I guess the sand and the vibrations are the hardest challenge for the watch.
Ingo, are you a watch addict?
Yes, I am. I collect watches and old cars. It is my passion.
What should be the ultimate accessory of a gentleman driver ?
The right watch for the right person.