SA comedian's bio-fuel record bid

2013-06-05 12:44

CAPE TOWN - Veteran South African comedian Mark Sampson and his family will attempt to smash the Guinness World Record for the longest journey made using alternative fuel behind the wheel of their Big Green Truck.

From June 2013, the Sampson's, wife Sam Pearce and children Ruby (12) and Zola (eight), will spend the next two years living in a customised truck on a journey they’ve named Africa Clockwise. The family will stop in 40 countries along the way and return to SA by September 2015.


Sampson’s truck has a master bedroom, kitchen, toilet, shower and two additional beds. The vehicle has six solar panels and can be powered by any cooking oil from coconut, palm or even greasy leftovers fromfish and chips.

Sampson said: "Africa Clockwise is also a quest to discover whether it is possible for his kids to live happily without a TV or water on tap – like the majority of the continent’s children. A quest to investigate whether a future without fossil-fuelled luxuries may not be such a bad thing, helping us to focus on quality of life, not quantity of possessions."

"The journey in the Big Green Truck is ‘clockwise’ – both as a direction and as an awareness. Time is crucial and we all need to wake up and take proactive steps to safeguard our future."


In May 2010, Canadians Cloe Whittaker and Tyson Jerry broke the record set in 2006 by a German team by driving 48 535km back and forth across North America to visit every state and then into Canada to visit every province there.

Whittaker/Jerry's "Driven To Sustain" team used vegetable oil donated by restaurants they passed along the way.

According to Sampson: "Our drive around the circumference of the continent will take us at least that far, but we’ll be doing it on African roads – wondering if we should get bonus points for that?!

"Our aim is to inspire people with positive stories to challenge images of the ‘overwhelming doom of global warming’ and ‘darkest Africa’, and to hold out hands across the continent, spreading a message of connection and support."


Sampson will be performing his Africa Clockwise comedy show at South African embassies along the way.

The Africa Clockwise adventure has been endorsed by minister Paul Matshatile of the Department of Arts and Culture: "The Department of Arts and Culture is pleased to endorse the Africa Clockwise project by Mark Sampson and his wife Sam Pearce, which seeks to use arts and culture to create awareness and respond to the modern day challenge of climate change."

The two-year route: Africa Clockwise provisional itinerary of 40 countries

First year - West coast June 2013 – May 2014
Namibia - June
Angola -June
DRC  -July
Congo - July
Gabon- July
Equatorial Guinea -  tbc
Cameroon - Aug
Nigeria - Aug
Benin -Sept
Togo - Sept
Ghana - Oct
Cote d’Ivoire- Nov
Liberia - Nov
Sierra Leone -  Nov
Guinea  - Dec
Guinea Bissau - Dec
Gambia  -  Dec
Senegal   - Jan
Mali tbc  - Feb
Mauritania - March inc Western Sahara
Morocco - April
Spain/Europe/UK- May-Aug

Return journey on the East coast - September 2014 – September 2015

Algeria - Sept
Tunisia - Sept
Libya - tbc
Egypt - Oct
Sudan - Nov
South Sudan  - Nov
Ethiopia -Nov-Dec
Kenya - Dec
Uganda tbc - Jan
Rwanda tbc -Jan
Burundi tbc  -Jan
Tanzania - Feb-Mar inc Zanzibar
Mozambique - April (N) and August (S)
Malawi - May
Zambia - June
Zimbabwe - July
Swaziland- Sept
Lesotho- Sept

Follow the Sampson family's journey here!

  • Sibusiso Zungu - 2013-06-08 08:53

    Goooo whackhead.... you are the man. When I grow up I want to be just like you....

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