As football fans across the world look forward to this summer’s FIFA World Cup™ in Brazil, Kia is set to feature in a new TV series on Dave from 5 May that charts an epic 3,000 mile football road trip across South America in order to discover the secrets of the continent’s passion for the beautiful game.
‘Road to Rio’ is a six-part TV series that will see comedians and football fans Mark Watson and Henning Wehn at the wheel of their Kia Soul, as well as other Kia vehicles along the way, travelling to six football-rich countries and discovering how, as an education for children and a religion for parents, football is a way of life in South America.
The football-obsessed duo take their trusty Kia from Uruguay to Brazil and en route they laugh with football-crazy locals, face roadside dramas with llamas, sample the local cuisine and meet a host of footballing legends – a line-up that reads like the ultimate South American fantasy football team.
Six episodes: Six Footballing Nations
The intrepid explorers start their journey in Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay and host city of the very first football World Cup, where they attempt to track down Alcides Ghiggia, the only surviving player from the 1950 World Cup final. They pitch their wits against Paolo Montero and attempt to get the inside track on Luis Suarez from his mother.
Next in Argentina, Henning and Mark uncover the secrets behind the country’s footballing success with the help of Alberto Tarantini and try to beat goalkeeping hero Sergio Goycochea in a penalty shoot-out on his live TV show. Off the pitch, they play tennis with Ricky Villa and Henning and Mark turn detective tracking down the elusive Diego Maradona.
After crossing the Andes into Chile, the boys visit ex-West Ham defender Javier Margas’ extraordinary motel, go for a spot of wine tasting with Elias Figueroa and bake a birthday cake for Chilean goal-machine Ivan Zamorano. Heading up the Caribbean coast to Colombia, Mark then spends a night on the town with Faustino Asprilla and they hear about the dark side of Colombian football, before Henning spends a day as a referee.
On reaching Sao Paolo, the boys undergo some Brazilian male grooming before tracking down 70s legend Rivellino, meeting the future Pele (Pele’s own son) and after various thwarted efforts finally tracking down World Cup winner and Middlesbrough legend Juninho.
After five roller-coaster weeks Henning and Mark eventually arrive in Rio. Mark takes to the air in a hang-glider to investigate how World Cup preparations are shaping up and the boys visit what will soon be the most famous stadium on the planet, Estádio do Maracanã. They also meet the Captain of Brazil’s legendary 1970 World Cup winning team, Carlos Alberto, and revive a 1970s Brazilian craze, Autobal – football played by cars.
In between all this, Henning and Mark learn to be gauchos, worship at the Church of Maradona and take a tour of Pablo Escobar’s house with his brother. They also meet Falcao’s father at a local football match and feast on kilo after kilo of South American steak!
Kia: Passionate about football
As an Official Partner of this summer’s 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ it made sense that the ‘Road to Rio’ journey happen in a Kia. During their adventure Mark and Henning drive the latest funky Soul urban crossover, the Sportage crossover and the Sorento SUV.
Artur Martins, Vice President of Marketing, Kia Motors Europe, commented: “As a brand that is passionate about football, and with the World Cup just around the corner, we were happy to put the wheels under Mark and Henning’s footballing road trip with some of our latest vehicles. The All-New Soul, that features in the show, has just been launched across Europe so ‘Road to Rio’ is a great opportunity for thousands of football fans to see our stylish urban crossover in action.”
Kia has been an Official Automotive Partner of FIFA since 2007, including the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ and UEFA EURO 2012™, and has recently strengthened their involvement in the game with an unprecedented long-term commitment of extending their partnership with FIFA until 2022.
The All-New Kia Soul
The second generation of Kia’s dynamic urban car is now on sale in the UK. Designed to offer even more dramatic styling, enhanced driving dynamics, improved quality and space the B-segment crossover is available with 1.6-litre petrol and diesel engines and a choice of manual or automatic gearboxes. Five trim levels cater for all desires and Kia’s pioneering seven year warranty provides owners with peace of mind. The all-new Soul is on sale in the UK now priced from just £12,600.
‘Road to Rio’ will air on 40 television networks around the world and be shown in 150 countries.