Anyone else ride the original Nevada Rally?

Discussion in 'Racing' started by BigBearJoe, Jan 16, 2009.

  1. BigBearJoe

    BigBearJoe Been here awhile

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    With all this rally coverage and being blessed with the perspective of actual rally racers who frequent this board, I realized that I can add myself to the list of rally riders. I rode and finished the 1995 Nevada Rally, the last of the three that took place. Six days and about 1800 miles in a loop around Nevada. Put on by Casey Folks Of Best in the Desert and Franco Acerbis. Rode a Suzuki DR 350S which was punched out to 435 cc. Had one person on my support crew, none other than the godfather of dual sport, Jim Pilon. Finished in 40th position, which was essentially dead last. I actually crashed out on the fifth day with a concussion, but came back and rode the sixth day and finished in Mesquite, Nevada. I still have four of the six road books.
    Anyone else?
    #1
  2. bajaboundmoto

    bajaboundmoto Been here awhile

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    I rode it in '95 also. It was all roadbook, pre-GPS back then.
    Rode a KX250. I set it up Baja style which I figured out Day1 wasn't right, geared way too high.
    Didn't really learn much about navigation prior to the race so I learned as I went. Made a huge mistake that cost about 1/2 hour on Day1 by not trusting Bruce Ogilvie's navigation. He's very good at it and I was an idiot.
    I finished 10th overall as I recall.
    It was a fantastic experience.
    #2
  3. KenR

    KenR Long timer

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    I haven't, but I sure wish Casey would do another Nevada Rally. I think that might've been what was behind the BITD Nevada Rally Experience - to build interest and a group of likely entrants that would make staging a full-on rally feasible.

    It's probably gotten very complicated for a promoter to put on a big, multi-day event like this, with government permits, landowner issues, land access, etc., etc., but I'd love to try a rally sometime. Going halfway around the world to give it a shot isn't going to happen.
    #3
  4. Seth S

    Seth S Will _____ for _____

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    sanity?
    its all Land Access and permissions now.
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  5. wrk2surf

    wrk2surf on the gas or brakes

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    V to R is a three day this year maybe Casey is stickin his toe in the water??
    #5
  6. bobzilla

    bobzilla Dirty Old Man

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    While I didnt race the Ralley I did run check points for Casey and following the circus around this state 2 years was a blast. Some ot the top guys were really down to earth and great to be around but some of the others were just above us:rofl . Cant say enough about Casey and Franco, both class acts. Casey is very intense.
    At the time I was fit enough and racing plenty but did not have the $$ to do the race, Now I have the $$ and time but am older, more broken and slower:lol3

    That said I would probably enter if he had it again.
    #6
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  7. silverstone

    silverstone Been here awhile

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    Would you boys that have done the Nevada Rally have any photo's of the rally that you could post up here? Just for interest.

    If this Rally was reborn, I know that there would be some Canadian boys very interested in doing this as well as myself.

    Thanks
    #7
  8. LUDO

    LUDO Been here awhile

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    I was part of the CYCLE GEAR team Pit Crew when they brought Alain Olivier.

    if it ran again, I know many Euros who would come and race it. David Casteu, Verhoeven for ex.
    #8
  9. BigBearJoe

    BigBearJoe Been here awhile

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    Mentioning Bruce Ogilvie, reminded me that he was there and that I was using one of the "fancy" electronic odometers from the mid-80s XR600s (still have it buried out in the garage somewhere). I went over to the Honda pits to asks for assistance in calibrating the unit. They referred me to Bruce as being, as we know, the expert.

    Casey has certainly run many multi-day events (Nevada 1000 and 2000) since the demise of the rally, but none of them ever returned to navigation style. I just got the impression that the concept of navigating was to "weird" to sell to the general American racing community. American desert racers were just too comfortable with following pink ribbon. There would most certainly be more interest now than back in the late 90s. I'm amazed that Casey is able to do it, but he certainly has the ability to get the permits for another multi-day event. It would just be selling the idea to "corporate" off-road racing.
    #9
  10. bajaboundmoto

    bajaboundmoto Been here awhile

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    My crew and I
    L to R - Bill Browning, Me, Gabby from Ensenada, Tex (now of Baja Designs), Dave Chase (now of Team Honda MX/SX), and The Late Juan Ortiz (one of my best buddies from Ensenada, RIP)
    #10
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  11. bajaboundmoto

    bajaboundmoto Been here awhile

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    Bruce raced that experimental Honda EXP2 in '95. That zero-emmissions 2-stroke. Sounded like a bucket of bolts but gan good I guess.
    I for one would LOVE to do that type event again.
    Speaking of following ribbons... See in this photo a pink ribbon in the brush by my bike.... I remember a few short spots Casey had to mark a specific trial/boundry due to restrictions of some sort.
    [​IMG]

    Yep, BBJ is right, all the pics I have of the NR are from Grumpy
    #11
  12. BigBearJoe

    BigBearJoe Been here awhile

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    What are you crazy! This was 1995, before digital cameras. I'd have to actually take a printed photo and scan it to post it here. That's just too old school!:D Actually, I've only got two photos, taken by Grumpy, showing just me on the bike. Nothing unique other than seeing the cheap plastic Acerbis road book holder and my number bib.

    In 1995, the course went Las Vegas...Tonopah...Fallon ... Winnemucca... Elko... Ely... Mesquite. Two buddies and I used the road book to re-ride the Ely to Mesquite leg back around 2002. Most of the course was still accessible on dual sport bikes, except for a section near Caliente that was now fenced farmland and right at the finish coming into Mesquite.
    #12
  13. BigBearJoe

    BigBearJoe Been here awhile

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    That's cool! The picture above is exactly the same as the one I have, just substitute me and my bike. Same perspective, same amount of air, same body position, same fine coating of dust on the bike.
    #13
  14. BigBearJoe

    BigBearJoe Been here awhile

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    Hey Tim,where did you get that fairing back in 1995?
    #14
  15. BigBearJoe

    BigBearJoe Been here awhile

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    Several years after the rally, I was going through the old daily stage results that I had kept and saw the name...Fabrizio Meoni.

    In 1995, I had no idea that he would become a Dakar champion. The international flavor of the of the event was super cool. I didn't see it myself, but my pit guy Jim Pilon swears he saw some of the competitors down on their knees and praying towards Mecca one morning. There were also a fair number of young Italian hotties as part of the Acerbis caravan.

    Another distasteful moment was asking for water at one of the checkpoints, and being given sparkling soda water. I hate that stuff, and it was way worse when I was overheated and exhausted in the middle of the desert!
    #15
  16. johnson357

    johnson357 Bad Monkey Racing

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    I'm in for a Baja Bound race rental for this one if they bring it back...........You know I can get my pet Gorilla to come too.:lol3
    #16
  17. LUDO

    LUDO Been here awhile

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    the big downer of one of the first two events (I think the second) was when GEoff Eldridge, editor of Australian Dirt Bike mag. crashed into a car going backward on the trail and got killed.
    #17
  18. bajaboundmoto

    bajaboundmoto Been here awhile

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    Took an Interceptor fairing, heated/bent/cut/hacked to shape. Used that as the 'mold' for composite. It was mounted to the steering stem and housed MD elec. roadbook, couple mr16 headlights, and aux. gas tank (needed more range and was against the rules to carry a jug on your belt).

    Johnson357 - We can only hope!
    #18
  19. neduro

    neduro Addict Super Moderator

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    Awesome photos and history!

    There are a few of us putting together roadbook rides from time to time, but you can't really spread word of them in the open for fear of it being called an event or a race when it is in fact nothing more than a gathering of friends.

    I bought www.rallypirate.com (nothing there yet) with the intent of making an invite only forum where people who want to run roadbooks could discuss and swap roadbooks, but I haven't had the time to do anything with it yet. If anyone is wicked smaht and wants to help construct something there, PM me and we'll figure it out.

    Finally, the advent of the SPOT messenger raises some interesting possibilities... :deal :evil
    #19
  20. BigBearJoe

    BigBearJoe Been here awhile

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    Since I imagined that it was a one-time event, I just bought the $70 plastic Acerbis road book holder. At the time, I just couldn't see justifying a $200+ electronic road book holder that I would never use again. I mounted it up high on a metal frame so it was easier to view. But that meant that the advancement knob was just sticking out in space, not mounted on the handle bar near the grip. So not only did I have to advance it manually but I had to take my left hand completely off the handle bar. And of course as many of you are probably familiar, the vibration made the road book unwind. So I was constantly having to take in the slack and then advance to the next directions.

    Johnny Campbell won in 1995. At that time he was a up-and-coming desert racer. There is some great video footage of him from the 1994 rally being totally snookered by Alain Olivier. When Olivier noticed that Johnny was shadowing him for navigation, he purposely took a wrong turn, went to little ways in the wrong direction, pulled to the side and faked a mechanical problem. Then when Johnny went roaring by, Olivier turned around and continued on the correct path. Not sure how far Johnny went before he figured out he had been had!
    #20
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