FOURTEEN businessmen are to drive from Marlow to Monte Carlo at a snail's pace in a bid to raise £75,000 for charity.

The group is taking part in the wacky adventure from Saturday (June 23) when it will start their engines at the Compleat Angler Hotel, Marlow, in seven old Citroën 2CVs.

They will then head for Dover before making the 1,000 mile trip to Monaco.

The businessmen, who are in groups of two in each car, have signed up for the Rosbifs and Snails' Route du Soleil - a charity car tour in aid of Thames Valley & Chiltern Air Ambulance Trust.

They are having to raise a minimum of £5,000 per car towards the £75,000 fundraising target, and so far they have reached £66,000. The cash will pay for a replacement helicopter for the ambulance trust.

Mark Howard, 45, of Henley Road, Marlow, is driving with friend John Yates, of Cookham Dean.

The director of FST Marketing in Marlow said: "As soon as we heard about it we thought it would be a great thing to do so we went on eBay and started bidding for 2CVs.

"We found one which was not too rotten, as they tend to rust, and we went to Cheltenham to pick it up.

"We both got in and wondered what we were doing, but it got us back with no problems."

Mr Howard, a father-of-three, said the event was due to start in true Le Mans style with each team jumping into their cars and going - rather than facing a starting grid.

They are due to arrive in Monaco on Friday, June 29, and will be supported by two escort vehicles and a back-up vehicle on the way.

The businessmen will also be dressed in the humorous TV wigs and moustaches of the event's main sponsor, directory enquiry company The Number UK (118), throughout the journey.

Each driver is meeting their own expenses for the trip, including the cars, petrol and accommodation.

Mr Howard said: "I think the funniest bit will be running to the cars at the start because they are so slow."

Ross Brawn, ex-technical director of Ferrari, will start the event at the Compleat Angler around 9am when he waves a Union Jack. The trip in France will involve scenic routes and the cars will travel in convoy.