Bob, I was brand new to offroad events until recently and when I did my first rally I have to admit to being absolutely panicked about the navigation and roadbook. Seriously, I was shi**ing myself.
All I can say is, dive in. Its one of those things that when you look at it from the "outside" having never done it, it looks really complicated and makes you think "God I'm never going to get this". ICO, MD, trimming, CAP...
..but you will get it, I promise.
The biggest mistake a lot of people make (and I freely admit to making the same one) is being scared about it and just following along behind other people letting them do all the nav. Avoid this at all costs and just dive in. There is nothing wrong with grouping up with team mates and sharing the nav, this way you can stop periodically and swap round with who is going to lead, giving each of you the chance to really nail it.
When starting out, especially if you are going to go it alone, start small, say on a liaison section of say 10km. It will massively boost your confidence and make your brain realise "hey this roadbook stuff really does work"! (not to mention get you used to using the equipment).
You will make mistakes. Everyone does. Actually, one of the most hilarious moments on Heroes Legend this year for me was with Perry Newton - we ended up getting lost in a crop field at one point, having got the roadbook totally wrong. We must of been in that field for 20 minutes trying to find a way out, totally covered in crops and vegetation stalks. I laughed so hard I almost couldn't ride and almost fell off from laughing myself weak. We got out of the field but we looked like extras from Dad's Army covered in stalks and all sorts of other crap. Brilliant fun.
You get good days where you're right on it, other days, you can end up having some horrendous mind games where you are totally worried about whether you are going in the right direction. But this is what makes roadbook rallies so much fun, because it can level the playing field so quickly where a fantastic rider can make a right boll*cks of his navigation, meaning a lesser rider can "nav his way" to winning a stage having had the edge in that skill that day.
Just go for it!
Originally Posted by firebore
Hope someone on here can help. Yet another mid life crisis for me so have set goal of doing the Tuareg in 2014
but new to riding off road so maybe "a bridge too far" but not out to win it just finish. Done k2 Beacons and Cambrian in UK enjoyed it, now want to step up to roadbook navigation.
Someone suggested that the dalmatia rally would be a good starter so was planning on doing that but looking at their website it says 2013 event cancelled.
So what to do now? Would the Hellas be suitable for novice? Albania? or another ?
Also logistics of UK to Greece any ideas