British car enthusiasts tour for military kids

September 8, 2017

On the second weekend in October, classic British car enthusiasts will drive a 750-mile maiden American tour through the hills and autumn foliage of Maryland, West Virginia and Virginia. Called the DC Area America’s Reliability Run, it’s a fundraiser for Our Military Kids.

According to Jeff Olson, director of the DC tour, reliability runs are not new. They link back about hundred years to the UK, when car owners challenged themselves and their engines over sometimes risky terrain, like stream beds, goat paths and mountain passes. The common theme was always raising money for a children’s charity.

“This DC tour isn’t a rally in the traditional sense because you don’t have to drive X number of hours by a certain time.” said Olson. “It’s just a fun drive on great roads in the company of fellow British car hobbyists, and it’s for a good cause.”

Commencing at 9:30 a.m., Friday, Oct. 13, registered drivers and their navigators will set off from the Hyatt Place Hotel in Sterling, Virginia. Maps will guide up to 50 teams on a “cloverleaf” style route, starting with a 250-mile run through Maryland. Saturday’s route goes 350 miles through West Virginia. Then Sunday’s tour concludes with an abbreviated run through Virginia, capped with an award brunch in Middleburg.

Fifty of our OMK stars are serving as team mascots. These kids sent photos that event organizers are matching to each car entry.

For drivers, an entry fee of $550 covers meals, maps, windshield banners and more. Olson hopes each team will raise at least $1,000 in donations for OMK. He said registration through the website will continue until the event.

“If you have a car made in Britain and at least 25 years old, sign up,” he said. “If you want to participate in another way, make a donation to one of the teams on the website: ”

Joel, 9, is an OMK star and one of the tour mascots. He loves NASCAR and want to be an auto designer when he grows up.