Emily Maddick is our roving reporter on the road with 70 of the planet's most fierce and fabulous women, in a fleet of Valentino red racing cars raising cash for African charities: Shine on Sierra Leon, O Africa and Sumbandila. Their five day adventure will take them from London, via Paris, Lyon, Milan and end in Cannes to join the glitz and glam of the Cannes Film Festival…
Here's her first bulletin...
**Saturday 16 May: **London - Paris
**The first destination on out Cash & Rocket adventure - Paris. **
Now then, to arrive in Paris in a fleet of the Valentino red insanely insane super cars - we're talking Maserati, Bentley, Lamborghini, Aston Martin, Ferrari (like the ones with doors that open up like wings) - accompanied by a police escort, well, that's pretty spectacular let me tell you.
And if that wasn't enough Valentino laid on a champagne cocktail soirée at their spectacular Paris HQ on Place Vendome, just round the corner from our digs for the night: the Dorchester Collection's Le Meurice. Not too shabby!
**Painting the town red - literally. **
And oh wowee, the scene at the Place Vendome was quite something to behold...the Cash & Rocket girls were painting the town of Paris red - Valentino red of course! In a host of stunning Valentino gowns…Adriana Lima.
And as for Valentino HQ, what a place. Red, red roses everywhere, bowls and bowls of them on every surface, in every corner, even in some ladies' hair. Chloe Green - who last year went to South Africa to speak to children in schools with the charity Sumbandila who we are raising money for - posed up a treat on the famous Valentino sweeping staircase and debuted a new blunt long bob.
Jo Wood takes the wrong direction.
Jo Wood confided in Grazia that, despite being a seasoned Cash & Rocket gal (this is her fourth rally with daughter, Leah) she'd already got lost - before even leaving London! 'I took the wrong turn at Hyde Park Corner!' She said. 'Leah couldn't believe it! So we took a slightly differ net route to Dover, still came in fourth though! Then BOTH my sat navs packed up! So we've bought a whole book of old-school maps! But I love cash & rocket, it's one of the highlights of my year - it reminds me of all those years I went on tour with the Stones - but this is even better, as there's no boys! So no hassle!’
After a feast of delicious French canapés and champagne - not too much mind you as all drivers and co-pilots get breathalyser every morning - Julia Brangstrup, our leader, and the inspirational lady who organises Cash & Rocket announced that so far this year, the charity has raised £1.2million for the chosen three African charities. Not bad going since they only started raising funds at the beginning of this month. The idea is to race around raising as much awareness and as much money as possible. And with these ladies, it comes naturally…oh and did we mention we’ve got two Victoria Secrets Models onboard too? Yup, Adriana Lima and Selita Banks looked pretty darned racy last night too. This is one glam slam car rally that’s for sure…