Travel Magazine

Into the Wild Meets: Ambulanti Team

By Frontiergap @FrontierGap

A group of four extremely passionate and dedicated youngsters have dediced to come together in an adventurous and quite out of the ordinary travel experience. Venturing through over 13.ooo km diverse areas from London, Barcelona and Milan to get to Ulan Bator, The Ambulanti Team is racing towards an objective to seek freedom, interact and help the local populations – in an ambulance!

Into the wild meets: Ambulanti Team
Alle images courtesy of Ambulanti Team

Into the Wild: You are known as the Ambulanti team, but more specefic, who are you?

Alberto Poli: I am a 24 year-old acrobat and filmaker devoted to sports, phisical and mental wellness, and I use videos to spread my passions, discover new ones and inspire people.

Alberto Grimaldi: I am a designer with a passion for cars and bikes, fascinated by the 3D world and attracted by graphic design. I’m constantly looking for new discoveries in materials and design techniques, as well as new experiences to expand my cultural knowledge.

Walter Morselli: I am a Creative Designer and multitasking citizien of the world, passionated about  Art/Design, extreme sport and pretty much anything that can take me around the globe

Alessandra Dallari: I am a great traveler, with extensive experience in social, enterprising and  the spirit of adventure

Into the Wild: So you all have very diverse backgrounds, how did you meet eachother?

Walter: We all come from different realities. I am the nucleus that brought all of us together, since we didn’t know each other until the Ambulanti Team was born. I met Alberto Grimaldi while attending university and Alberto Poli at a Krav Maga fighting class.

Into the Wild: How did you get the idea to take part to the Mongol Rally?

Alessandra:  It was really a coincidence, but we found out that we all share the same passions and the adventourous spirit!

Into the Wild: What is the your main reason to take part to the Mongol Rally?

Alberto Poli: What we all have in common is, obviously, the love for traveling and adventure. We have different and amazing experiences in various countries around the planet, and we strongly believe that, as Saint Agostino said, “the world is a book and he who doesn’t travel only reads one page”. The only way to grow and enlarge our perception of life is to discover as many cultures and people as possible. Moreover, we reckon there would be nothing better than combine this passion with the possibility to do something useful for other people. So that is how our decision to join the Mongol Rally really came about. It is a chance for us to move through lots of different countries in the most extreme and adventurous way possible, with a great goal: raising funds for children in need Mongolia.

Into the wild meets: Ambulanti Team

Into the Wild: So, you have had a particular out of the box thinking going on - why did you choose to race in an ambulance?

Walter: We have chosen the most uncomfortable vehicle to cross the desert in, however it is the noblest from the humanitarian life point of view.

Into the Wild: Clue us in here, because it seems that it is not a very traditional race -  what are the basic rules to run the Mongol Rally? 

Alberto Grimaldi: The Mongol Rally is a non-competitive race, so there are no big rules we need to follow. Beside the official finish line, hosted in Ulaan Bataar, the only thing you need to know is that you are not allowed to navigate with GPS or 4x4 vehicles, and there are some limitations about the engine size. Besides that, you can choose any kind of transport, number and age of crew members, how long your trip will last and which countries to pass through

Alessandra:  The only and real Mongol Rally rule is the registration fee: to be officiallly recognized by the rally organization, each team needs to raise a certain amount of money, that will represent the donation to the associations Cool Earth and Christine Noble Children’s Foundations.

Into the Wild: Are there any of the rules you don’t particulary like, or are afraid of?

Alberto Poli:  Personally, I reckon that once you join the Mongol Rally, there’s no need to worry about a particular rule but the Rally itself! A 13.000 km wild drive through deserts, rivers and mountains chains without any kind of assistence is pretty crazy on its own, what else could ever trouble us more?

Into the Wild: Mongol Rally has been heard to be an “unsupported adventuring chaos”. How do you plan to finish the race?

Walter: Luckily, we have our precious mechanic, Alberto Grimaldi, who’s constantly renovating and equipping the ambulance, in order to make it as reliable and sturdy as possible. We know this won’t be enough, since breakdowns and damages will definitely happen due to the highly messed up routes. But we are gathering tons and tons of spare components so we are prepared to deal with any emergency!

Alberto Grimaldi: Plus, our goal is to donate the ambulance once we arrive in Ulaan Bataar, so we better try our best to keep it in one piece!

Into the Wild: What do you think the biggest challenge will be?

Alberto Grimaldi: Personally, I think the hardest and most frustrating part will be...crossing the borders! We are going to pass through very strict countries, the majority of which requires a visa to enter, so we are prepared to spend hours and hours at the boarders being searched and explaining why four young people would drive a private ambulance all the way to Mongolia, all by communicating with gestures!

Into the Wild: It’s quite a long route where you will see lots of places, but which country are you most looking forward to visit?

Alessandra: We are obviously looking forward to reach Mongolia, because it always sounds so exotic and unknown. I'm pretty sure though, that as soon as we get out of Europe, every single mile we drive will be an utter discovery and give us incredibile emotions.

Walter : Some of us have already been to Turkey or Russia, but this time we will experience them in a total different way since we will see the wild and real side of these amazing places.

Alberto Poli: Kazakhstan is the one that fascinates me the most presently, I can't wait to cross the astonishing, deserted steppe landscapes.

Into the Wild: As adrenelanin junkies and common travellers, have you ever faced a journey as tough as this?

Alberto Poli: Yeah, quite similar. Last year we participated in another human rally in Marocco.

Into the wild meets: Ambulanti Team

Into the Wild: Where is the most extreme place you have traveled before?

Everyone: Kiev, during the Ukraine revolution

Into the Wild: To take part in the project, your team will need to raise at least 1,000 euros for charity, how are you getting on with that?

Alessandra: We doing a very good job, we need all the help we can get for us to meet the goal!

Into the Wild: Why is the cause so important to you?

Alberto Grimaldi: Gandhi used to say: "Be the change you want to see in the world" and that's what we are trying to do with this project. We live in a world that makes it rather complicated to help others, because all the good things and luck we have, makes us forget how many unlucky people there are; plus, when donating something, you don't always know whether you are supporting a right cause or not.

Alberto Poli: Participating in the Mongol Rally allows us to do something useful for someone who really needs it, and to experience those less fortunate realities first hand. This is what will change us the most, and this is how we want to start changing things.

Into the Wild: This obviously means the world to you guys, which initiatives have you launched to get the amount needed?

Walter: We are working really hard to get things done as soon as possible, since we have a little bit more than a month to go. We picked up a lot of sponsors that are providing us with materials and everyday needs and we are giving lots of TV and newspapers interviews to spread the word about our project. On top of that we are receiving a lot of donations through our websites!

Alberto Poli: Plus we are selling our official t-shirts, organizing self-financing events, filming promo videos. Hence, people are truly giving their best to support us, and we won't disappoint them!

Into the wild meets: Ambulanti Team

Into the Wild: Where can people follow your progress and how can they help?

Alessandra:  Anyone who wants to give their support to the team, wants to follow our progress or ask for more information can reach us on www.ambulantiteam.it. Here you can find the complete description of the Mongol Rally and our team, as well as the PayPal circuit webpage for donations!

Into the Wild: So what would you say to our readers to convince them to support your team?

Alberto Grimaldi: “A journey of a thousand miles always starts with the first step."(Lao Tzu) Every single one of your pounds are gold to us, so please help us make this possible and be a part of the adventure! Your name will be remembered in our hearts (and printed on our ambulance!) all the way to the kids in Mongolia!

Are you looking for your adventure? Frontier runs over 300 dedicated conservation, community and adventure projects worldwide. Find out more about great ideas for your gap year, and opportunities to volunteer across the globe.

Get more from us on social media with FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest. 

See more from volunteers on YouTubeFlickr and Instagram #FrontierVolunteer.

Into the wild meets: Ambulanti Team


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