So the big day has arrived and Richard and I drive up to Whitney to meet Paul, the vendor of the Buick, and go through the handover process.
It's a beautiful day in the Cotswolds and Paul and Richard are already there when I arrive. The car looks great and much bigger than in the photos - it weighs 1.5 tonnes unladen so on a rally it's total weight is around 2 tonnes. Paul is extremely knowledgeable and takes us through the car mechanically and I become increasingly terrified as he does so because every other sentence starts, "when this goes wrong you just unscrew this bit and put a new one in - easy." To a mechanical novice like me it sounds anything but. Paul has brought along two lever arch files of information on the car. It was originally built in Canada and shipped to South Africa, which is why it is Right Hand Drive.
It's only got three forward gears, the gearbox is like stirring porridge and it's easy to smash your hand on the dashboard when you change up to second. Paul thinks fitting a four speed box would up the top speed to 80 mph from the present 70 mph.
Whilst we are at RPS, the winners of the 2013 Peking to Paris Rally - Phil Garratt and Kieron Brown - pull into the yard and give the Buick an admiring glance. They won in a 1930's Chevrolet, not unlike the Buick and also prepared by RPS.
We hand the car over to Simon at RPS who is going to check it over and then put it into storage until he has room in the workshop to undertake the upgrades we want. Then its off to the pub in Filkins - The Five Alls - where we have a splendid lunch with friends who live nearby. That evening both Richard and I are at a fancy dress party where I go as Dick Dastardly from Wacky Races - Richard refuses to go as his sidekick, the dog Mutley, much to my disappointment.