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Old 03-05-2007, 04:02 PM   #1
bugfnnuts OP
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Regular guy does Dakar with update and lost episodes.

Or how crazy does one need to be? Not very. Just commited.



This is the story of my Dakar Adventure. Actually it’s more of a prequel. This is the beginning of the end of the story. The end of the beginning is written here. http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=202153. I put that part in Face Plant. But I didn’t get there till I did all this other stuff first. The clamor and about 100 emails saying that post should be in ride reports has prompted me to put this part of the story here. It will be in installments beginning with Lisbon and who was crazy enough to come along on this adventure.




There aren’t a terrible number of pictures because, well, once the race started I didn’t have a whole lot of time to be snapping off pictures. Hopefully you will enjoy the story and what pictures I have managed to cobble together. Oh, my camera is still on its way back too.

I learned a lot in the year it took to put this project together. I learned even more about life, perseverance, ingenuity, myself and riding during the race than I could ever have imagined.


You don’t get to the starting line of the Dakar without some, ok, a lot of help. Dakar isn’t cheap. The logistics aren’t easy. Your body and your head better be where they need to be. That means you need to be in better than decent physical shape and in the right frame of mind to the greatest extent possible. Those living with you could do with a dose of lunacy also. Luckily my support group is easily infected with the bug for this type of thing. Therefore an introduction of those who got me to the starting line is appropriate.


The first person who had to be on board for this project was Bugwife. Now I’m not talking about just saying “yes dear, that’s nice, have a good ride”. That much help isn’t going to get you very far. The project requires too much time and preparation for that feeble amount of support. Bugwife is a great athlete in her own right and knows what it takes to prepare for a physical and mental undertaking of this size.







As you can see Bugwife rides. She rides her highly modified TTR150 in Harescrambles and out in Moab. She bought her GS to follow me on dual sport excursions. We quickly learned that the “L” designation does in fact mean lower ground clearance.
Upon deciding to undertake this task she immediately made up a workout regimen for the entire year………..I didn’t follow a lot of it. You see she runs 100 mile ultra marathons through the mountains. I don’t. She runs 20 miles or more for fun. I don’t. It was a good template to work from though. She ran with me to keep me going, even put up with all the whining that went on. It was more than a lot.

She also had a plan for my nutrition during training and the race. It involved supplements, electrolytes, endurolyte capsules, powerbars, and all sorts for marathon type stuff. We used these items during training to see how my body handled and reacted to them.

Bugwife knows more than most how much a race of this length is mental and worked hard to make sure I was in the right frame of mind.

Next up is Jim Radcliff. I have ridden with Jim and some of the other knuckleheads to follow for quite some time. He built the bike came along as mechanic and fixed anything I tried to destroy. Sometimes that was quite a bit. Jim has much more riding experience than I do and has a good idea of what it takes to ride these beasts. Don’t do Dakar without a Jim along. Your life will be much more difficult.




That’s Jim on the right.



On the slick rock in Moab



Jim built the bike. But to there had to be a bike to build. Our grand savior, number one sponsor, the whole reason we could undertake this at all once the plan was hatched, Theeee Man, Jack Farr. Jack is the owner of Motorsport Ranch in Cressen Texas. We ride with him every year in Moab. Fortunately he is an adventurer, loves the Dakar and was gullible enough to be talked into funding a very expensive rallye bike. Truth be told I am very excited to get the bike back so we can get it reworked and prepped to deliver to Jack in Moab during our annual trip out there. Jack loves riding Moab and this bike will take him over White Rim, Kokopelli and many other trails with a big grin on his face.





Jack is on the left with the trail mix.

He bought a new KTM 450 last year and if he rides it half as well as his DRZ he is going to be trouble this year. Of course getting him off the rally bike may be near impossible so the 450 may not see much service.

Steve Quinn handled a great deal of the paperwork of which there is a great deal. Forms, forms, more forms, visas and more forms. This is him showing us just how steep some of the hills on Hell’s Revenge are.





Well……maybe not quite that steep but we get the picture. He is also a graduate of the Harden Offroad Adventure School and one of the support crew who came to Lisbon and points beyond.

Tom Trieshmann put together and donated all of our flights. He is a spy so he gets tons of frequent flyer miles from going all over the world doing spy type stuff. If you ask him he will emphatically insist he isn’t a spy. But then that’s exactly what a good spook would say now isn’t it.




Tom incognito……………………………………actually it was Lisbon.

Steve and Tom accosting Franco Acerbis before the start.

Charles Segebrecht was the last part of our merry band in Lisbon. Charles helped with a bunch of stuff. Don’t ask me what because I don’t know. But I’m sure he did. Actually he helped quite a bit with fundraising. His moral support was also invaluable on top of being one of the most easy going people you could ever travel with. If you ever meet him be sure to ask how he got his nickname “Third Rock”

By the way, does any one know the difference between "a switch" and " a fuse"? Charles spent quite a day finding out. You'll be suprised that you probably don't know the answer. At least not how it applies in translation. But, more on that later.




I have absolutely no idea what is taking place in this picture nor do I want to know. I’m not sure Charles knows.




Living like a Rock Star baby.





Cocktails between flights.




Crate unpacking in Lisbon.





Safety wiring spokes. That is all they will let me touch. Something about being just the rider and I should piss off and let them get on with it. That worked out just fine as you shall see.




Jim was busy making sure the bike was ready. Steve was making sure the rider was ready. He was doing his best to make sure I was loose and in the right frame of mind. What better way to do that than a nice lunch and a bottle of local wine. Don’t tell Jim. He thought I was out training.





The Nomads were our host in Lisbon and were a terrific and enthusiastic group. You cannot find a nicer group of people. They took the riders on a shake down ride one day.

Pictures of that day are in my camera, in my bag, in the truck, in a container, on a boat, on the Atlantic. These will have to suffice.










They took us to one of their local riding areas and cut us loose to shake out the cobwebs and nerves. It was a good thing too because I rode like a freaking idiot for the first hour. It was like I had never been on a bike in my life. Talk about nerves. After about an hour my head got back on straight and it was a great day.

After a beautiful ride through a local nature preserve we ended up at one of their private eateries. A little old place owned by of all things a little old lady and her husband. They were closed but had us in for a great little feast. We headed for a little sand riding that ended at the western most point in Europe. Pics of that are in the camera, in the bag.......you get the point.

Here are a couple of pics of the monument at the westernest most point.







Packing my airplane box.




Jim is teaching me the finer points of the electrical system. All I really need to know is up is on and it makes all the light thingys come on. Actually the bike was built from the ground up with ease of maintenance and problem diagnosis a priority. As the bike was being built Jim spent quite a bit of time teaching me what each part did, why it did it, and how to fix it. This ride started out as a bone stock KTM525 XC. It's lectrics have been highleeee modified.

Up is still on……..right?




Support trucks that carried all the parts we might break and then some.




Jim teaching me about my suhweeeet Motion Pro Multi-tool. It is a cool little piece of kit.

However, do not, and I repeat, do not get one of these little beauties and try to use it for the very first time on the trail. It is like a Rubics Cube the way it goes together. Saved my a$$ several times in the story to come.




Bivouac at the Inatel in Lisbon.




The view from our pits in Lisbon.





Jim doing that mechanic thing. I am convinced he kept it in this state for much of the time before the race so I couldn’t ride it. Please note fancy custom made Wolfman Luggage, baby bottle overflow bottle and super trick Bullet Proof Designs custom billet radiator guards.

Scenery wasn't too bad either.






This is why Tom is a spy, not a mechanic.




Final test ride before scrutineering.




The whole crew the day before scrutineering cept for Jack and Bugwife. Bugwife has plans. As you shall find out.

Then we went and celebated with a great dinner next to the water.

The wine wasn't too bad either.





I'm telling you. Rock Star treatment.





My room mates in Lisbon.

Next up is administrative checks, scrutineering, the start and stage one.

The fun is just beginning.

Bug
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"Dakar must be a race for few people, Dakar is a dream, the dream of the Rose Lake, if everybody finish it, the dream is over" Fabrizio Meoni

A challenge for those who go. A dream for those who stay behind. " Thierry Sabine

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Old 03-05-2007, 04:07 PM   #2
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Old 03-05-2007, 04:12 PM   #3
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Holy bajezus what is in the guage bezel area!! Could you post a close up of it?
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Old 03-05-2007, 04:20 PM   #4
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Old 03-05-2007, 04:20 PM   #5
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Now why did I have to go and open this thread?

Now I'm never gonna get any work(sucks) done this week?!

Please, keep up the posting, Eggsellent start so far!!!


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Old 03-05-2007, 04:31 PM   #6
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Regular guy with deep pockets, perhaps!!

Fantastic.. ... let's have more of it..
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Old 03-05-2007, 04:41 PM   #7
bugfnnuts OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadget Boy
Regular guy with deep pockets, perhaps!!
It is down to sponsors, grovelling, and the suppliers who donated parts cannot be thanked enough. No way could I come close to doing it out of my pocket without the incredible help of all the people with stickers on the side of that bike.

The selling of shirts, stickers and just donations from fellow adventurers was what put us over the top. Everyone who donated money or bought a shirt shares in this. I hope they enjoy the story.

At the end of the report I plan on posting all of their sites. They deserve a huge amount of thank you. To those without sites who just bought swag and gave. You know who you are and these stories and more are for you.

Thanks

Bug
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"Dakar must be a race for few people, Dakar is a dream, the dream of the Rose Lake, if everybody finish it, the dream is over" Fabrizio Meoni

A challenge for those who go. A dream for those who stay behind. " Thierry Sabine
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Old 03-05-2007, 04:56 PM   #8
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Woohoo! I'm along for the ride!!!



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Old 03-05-2007, 04:58 PM   #9
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Old 03-05-2007, 05:27 PM   #10
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Bug,

Your Sir, are certainly living our dreams... Thanks for taking us along and sharing your adventure of a lifetime with us!!



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Old 03-05-2007, 05:53 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadget Boy
Bug,

Your Sir, are certainly living our dreams... Thanks for taking us along and sharing your adventure of a lifetime with us!!



+1 Wow.
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Old 03-05-2007, 06:07 PM   #12
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A classic in the making

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Old 03-05-2007, 06:08 PM   #13
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Old 03-05-2007, 06:12 PM   #14
bugfnnuts OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burtonridr
Holy bajezus what is in the guage bezel area!! Could you post a close up of it?


Here is a better look at the office. Minus a whole bunch of stuff that gets put on at tech.

You'll see that stuff at tech. We aren't there yet.

Bug
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A challenge for those who go. A dream for those who stay behind. " Thierry Sabine
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Old 03-05-2007, 06:22 PM   #15
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Love your writing style!

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