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350 MINI Baby Racers on the way from the Allgäu to the Orient: potentially record-breaking, highly coveted and soon to be owned by children.

First highlight of the 2013 Allgäu-Orient Rally – Participants of the alternative vintage and modern classics race form the world's longest convoy of children's cars in front of the "Blue Mosque" in Istanbul - Official record status applied for - MINI Baby Racers to be donated to children.

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Munich. Once again, the smallest were the greatest: during their stopover at the Turkish capital of Istanbul, participants of this year's Allgäu-Orient Rally caused a stir with a spectacular event. They passed a test with a difference directly in front of the "Blue Mosque",  forming the world's longest ever convoy of children's cars with 274 out of 350 MINI Baby Racers. To the applause of numerous onlookers and under the supervision of a notary, the rally drivers lined up in their purely muscle-powered vehicles behind the MINI Cooper event organisers. Their efforts are to be rewarded with an entry in the official world record lists. But after this the record-breaking automobiles provided by MINI will be heading for another mission. The MINI Baby Racers are to be donated to toddlers from families in need at one of the subsequent stages along the rally route in Jordan.

Alongside BMW Group Classic and BMW, MINI joins in for the first time this year as a partner to this event which is not only regarded as an exceptional adventure for the fans of vintage cars and modern classics but also a particularly creative charity campaign. All rally vehicles are auctioned off at the destination in Jordan to raise money for charity. Thanks to a contact set up by Jordanian Princess Basmah Bani Ahmad, the MINI Cooper in which the rally organisers are travelling will go to a mobile midwife service. In addition to this, individual campaigns will support social service organisations and humanitarian projects at numerous stopover points along the route. Many of the teams also use their publicity to make individual fund appeals - not for themselves but for charities of their choice.

The MINI Baby Racers were handed out to all participating teams at the start of the rally in Oberstaufen. The latter then set off for south-eastern Europe with the little cars stowed in the luggage compartment or strapped to a roof rack. And they all completed the trip - despite the fact that many rally racers said they had been approached by locals, tourists and even border guards keen to buy a MINI Baby Racer off them. But the teams did not give in - after all, the aim was to set a record and then watch children's eyes light up with joy.

Part one of the mission has been fulfilled, part two is due to follow in a few days' time.  From Istanbul the rally route first goes to Ankara and from there to the far south of Turkey. The entire rally fleet will be crossing over from the port of Iskenderun by ferry to Haifa, Israel. The MINI Baby Racers will reach their final destination one day later, while the engine-powered rally vehicles still have another leg of the route to cover. The rally finishing line is near Aqaba in the Jordanian desert, where the winner will be named on May 17th. The rally can be followed online, too:  the current position of the red MINI Cooper transporting the organisers will be shown on the website

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