American Airlines Cargo has announced it has transported nine World Rally Cars and race equipment from London to Buenos Aires, Argentina, for this week’s Rally Argentina.
Working alongside logistics companies Delivered on Time and White Knight Global Logistics, American transported the race cars from London Heathrow Airport (LHR) to Ezeiza International Airport (EZE) through its hubs in Miami (MIA), Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) and New York Kennedy (JFK). Among the cars moved included the Ford Fiesta RS of M-Sport drivers Mikko Hirvonen, who currently sits fifth in the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) drivers’ standings, and Elfyn Evans, who ranks seventh.
Each car was placed in a specialty metal cage that is designed to travel on lower deck aircraft. In total, each shipment weighed between 3,000 and 4,000 pounds.
“The cars are completely stripped down, removing bumpers and such, in order to reduce the size as much as possible, and then they’re rebuilt at the rally site,” said Michelle Brown, cargo sales specialist for American. “The measurements are so critical on these cars that we can only load in the door position of our B777 aircraft, as we have an extra inch or so allowance in that area.”
American began moving the cars on April 29 and continued through May 1. The carrier’s vast global network and frequency of flights allow each car to arrive in Buenos Aires in around 24 hours.
“This movement is planned several months ahead of time to ensure we can meet the strict time parameters,” Brown said. “Transporting nine of these cars requires 18 separate flights to get them to Buenos Aires in time for the big race.”
The Rally Argentina is a rally competition that forms round five of the 2014 FIA World Rally Championship. It runs May 8 through 11 in Córdoba Province.