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Race Across the World: cast, the route they follow and when it starts on BBC Two


Sept. 17, 2019

It took the fictional Phileas Fogg 80 days to get around the world in Jules Verne’s 1873 novel, and now in 2019, a group of teams will attempt the a similar style challenge to get to Singapore in a new BBC reality competition.
Race Across The World sees five couples make their way to Asia without taking a single flight, making their way across sea and land on an epic adventure-filled trip in a bid to see who will be crowned the canniest travellers.
When is it on TV?
Race Across the World starts on BBC Two on Sunday 5 March at 9pm.
What’s it all about?
Essentially, this is a a competition to see who can arrive in Singapore first without the help of modern technology, without air travel and with limited money.
The first thing all five teams have to do is drop their smartphones, internet access and credit cards, and they are given a paper map and £1,329, the cash equivalent of a one-way airfare to Singapore to pay for the entire journey. If they run out, they’ll need to earn more.
The show’s producers say: “Their skill, ingenuity and determination will be tested to the extreme as they race through some of the world’s most beautiful scenery, form bonds and friendships across cultural divides and rely on the kindness of strangers in order to stand the best chance of winning.”
What’s the path they take?
It’s entirely up to each team, but all teams set off from Greenwich and then they must pass through five checkpoints to reach their final destination. First up is the ancient city of Delphi in Greece, but one team kicks off their trip by taking a minicab to Dover, which doesn’t bode well for the other 95 per cent of their trip’s budget.
Who is competing?
Friends Sue and Clare
Now in their late 50s, Sue and Clare have been lifelong friends since school and want to re-live and recapture the magic of the cross-Europe trip they made together 30 years ago. A chance encounter helps them realise they should have put a bit more planning into the crucial first leg.
Business partners Felix and Josh
With his copy of Sophocles in his rucksack, Felix, along with Josh, is impatient to get going. But he quickly finds out how easy it is, with an estimated 50 days of the journey still to go, to burn through their budget.
Best friends Natalie and Shameema
Natalie and Shameema have been best friends since they met at school aged nine and are determined to save money. They adopt a very focused strategy to do just that – be nice to people along the way, in the hope they will repay this kindness with a train ticket or two. Will it work?
Married couple Jinda and Bindu
Married couple Jinda and Bindu’s strong negotiation skills stand them in good stead but an unexpected emergency has their trip hanging in the balance.
Father and son, Darron and Alex
And as the first day draws to a close, father and son, Darron and Alex have yet to leave London – they’re patiently waiting for an overnight coach to Germany, aiming to leap-frog their fellow competitors and get ahead of the pack in the dash to Delphi.
The race is on, and the stakes are high – everyone wants to be first to the finish line and win the cash prize.
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