Unveiling of the New Range Rover Velar | Step inside some of the planet’s most exclusive homes | Man’s relationship with dogs | An epic drive through the Isle of Skye | The legendary Beechcraft Bonanza takes to the Skies
DEFENDER JOURNEYS F I N
DEFENDER JOURNEYS F I N D I N G ULURU MILESTONE As one of the most iconic vehicles ever created, the Defender continues to be one of the most loved. The enduring nature of the vehicle and the unwavering passion and adventure of its drivers is what makes Defender Journeys special – so special that fans have already completed an incredible 500 Defender Journeys all across the globe. To see an interactive map of the first 500 Defender Journeys, please see the link to the right. Jack Dobson named his Land Rover Defender Bruce. “It seems like an Australian name,” says the 35-year-old environmental consultant, who moved from the United Kingdom to Australia six years ago, “and the production company behind the movie Jaws named the shark ‘Bruce’. Bit of a tenuous link, but both the shark and our Defender are grey and we have sharks.” With the right name in hand, taking the Defender on an epic journey through his new homeland seemed like an obvious next step. And so, he set out from the suburbs of Sydney with his eyes on the majestic Uluru. With a small window between jobs, Jack and his partner had decided to visit the natural monument that embodies the country he had made his home. It was something he’d never done before, but felt – as an adopted Australian – he should. Still, as he raced along the dust tracks and byways of the vast Australian desert, he was doing so in a car that tied him inexorably to his past. “My introduction to Land Rovers started when I was 16 and living in the UK,” he says. He bought his first 1964 Series 2A Land Rover with his dad, who helped him build it over the course of a year. By the time he was 17 and able to drive, it was his carriage. He passed his test, and travelled to and from school, university and his first job in the classic car. When he moved to the other side of the world, he bought another Land Rover – a 1968 Series 2A – then Bruce, a 2012 Defender. “Land Rovers were always a big part of my life, right from the get-go” he says. Just how powerful this connection is can be seen every day on his Instagram account @jackuar_land_rover, where he celebrates Land Rovers in all colours and shapes to the tune of 75,000 followers. The trip across the Australian outback to Uluru was organised in less than a week, and involved converting the back of the Land Rover to fold down the rear seats in order to be able to sleep in the back. Once ready for the journey, Bruce rolled out of Sydney heading for the rock. In the early hours of their first day of adventure, they were a little dazed. “We hadn’t fully woken up until five hours into the trip,” Jack admits. The goal was to make it to Uluru as quickly as possible, and then spend more time on the return journey to savour the scenery and adventure. The pair swapped seats behind the wheel, watching the scenery pass them by. “Getting out of Sydney takes a while,” says Jack, “but once you’re out it’s a huge expanse.” As they rolled along, the earth turned brick red, and emus and kangaroos started crossing the road. “For some reason the emus were drawn to the Land Rover,” Jack recalls. Soon they were running alongside Bruce as the coast disappeared in his rear view mirror. After 3,000 kilometres and three days of camping out under the stars, contending with kangaroos, and replenishing the wiper wash several times to deal with Australia’s giant bugs, Uluru loomed large on the horizon. “Suddenly you’re staring at this amazing landform. From miles away you can start to see it emerging from the ground,” explains Jack. “It’s such a bare rock, but it really catches the light.” “The transformation from city lanes to endless horizons, the humming of the engine as you see the sun set behind this iconic landmark, the connection you get to the land ahead of you and the dust below, all as part of my own discovery of my new home country – for me, it was exactly what a Defender journey is all about.” JOIN THE ADVENTURE To explore more breathtaking Defender Journeys and to share your own, please visit landrover.com/ defenderjourneys 78
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Land Rover Magazine showcases stories from around the world that celebrate inner strength and the drive to go Above and Beyond.
In this issue, New Defender is put through its paces by two inspirational young adventurers as they prepare for an expedition to the South Pole. We also celebrate 50 years of Range Rover by taking a journey of discovery to Dubai. As well as looking back, we look to future as a group of visionaries explain the technologies that could change the future for all of us.