Inspired by Columbus, drivers set off on cross-country journey in classic Model A Ford

Vintage Adventurer Rod Wade and his co-driver Michael Flanders are attempting to drive their 1930 Ford Model A from New York City to Venice Beach, California in under 60 hours. Andrea Seed / Poppyseed Media

Two men left New York City Monday in an 83-year-old car to embark on a cross-country road trip, which they hope will generate money to stave kidney disease and, at the same time, land them a world record.

Rod Wade and his co-driver Michael Flanders, both Australian, left the Staten Island borough in New York at exactly 12:01 a.m. Monday in their 1930 Ford Model A with the goal of arriving at Venice Beach, Los Angeles, in under 60 hours, their spokeswoman, Andrea Seed, told NBC News.

"The guys were in good spirits when they set off, despite already having engine temperature issues as the car came to terms with carrying a full load of fuel and extra water," Seed said in an email. "This may mean more fuel stops which could impact the time but Rod and Michael are determined to beat the 60-hour mark."

Calling the journey their "Ocean to Ocean Challenge — America," the pair are raising money for the American Kidney Fund. 

Wade's wife and daughter suffer from kidney disease, according to a press release. He has allegedly raised thousands of dollars for Kidney Health Australia and now has his sights set on Americans afflicted by the malady.

Seed said that before setting off, Wade commented that it's apropos they began their journey on Columbus Day.

“It’s symbolic that our adventure starts on the same day as Christopher Columbus and his discovery of the New World is celebrated," Wade said. "We hope this great explorer will be looking down on us as we embark on an incredible journey through this beautiful country.”

The pair hope to arrive at the Venice Fishing Pier in Marina Del Rey, Calif., by 1 p.m. Wednesday, Seed said.

Wade filled a bottle with ocean water from the Atlantic before leaving New York and plans to pour the water into the Pacific Ocean when he and Flanders arrive, she said. 

Seed added that the men have water and basic foods such as energy bars and other snacks in the vehicle, but that they have decided not to stop for toilet breaks: They plan to use empty bottles.