Baja 1000 for the Wounded

Discussion in 'Racing' started by Cornbread82, May 2, 2012.

  1. Bronco Driver

    Bronco Driver Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Also,as far as I am concerned,your priorities are correct.:evil

    Scott---Considering your assigned sections of the race and the black bike maybe we should call you "Night Rider"lol

    Bala Burro---To be grammatically correct it should be "THE" Baja California Peninsula.
  2. rburkat

    rburkat Been here awhile

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    Chilliwack, BC
    Loved the video guys and the play by play commentary. With all those nac nac skills I thought you guys were training for a FMX event!
    Great fun and hope to ride and party with you guys down there.
  3. Cornbread82

    Cornbread82 Sir Crash A Lot!

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    Georgia
    A few of them might be able to ride with ya, but Scott and I make our money at the partying!!!! :freaky

    It was a great trip, the only thing that I have been thinking is when the hell can I get back!!! I think that John is tracking the phone, but when we get a number we will get it to ya. I would like to meet everyone that is going to be at the race, we have got a bunch of support from all the people, should be a good time!

    Brett
  4. wittyusername

    wittyusername Baja Basketball

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    Hey rburkat - glad you liked it. For sure...definitely looking forward to getting some beers with you down there.
  5. wittyusername

    wittyusername Baja Basketball

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    I just finished version 7 of our team flier. PM me if you'd like me to e-mail you one. Or you can download it from our website.

    It's getting pretty crowded down in the sponsor section.

    Thanks for looking.

    Scott

    Attached Files:

  6. HalfFast

    HalfFast Double Secret Pit Ninja

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    haha those are almost my exact words to Brett when we were planning this little ride. I told him he would be RUINED for riding anywhere else and that he would think about riding in Baja 24/7 until the next time.

    They were barely back across the border when they were missing Baja :cry
  7. Rico69

    Rico69 Adventurer

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    Nor-Cal
    Looking forward to the 1K race guys. Baja riding is an addiction for sure!
  8. Cornbread82

    Cornbread82 Sir Crash A Lot!

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    Georgia
    We got some good news on Friday, Baja Pits is giving us a sponsorship:freaky This is going to be a big help to us not needing to worry about being at every fuel stop!! Would like to say thank you to Baja Pits, and I wish November would hurry the hell up!!!!:lol3
  9. wrk2surf

    wrk2surf on the gas or brakes

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    THE exact center of California/Bass lake/Yosemite
    thats really cool of Carlos! :clap
  10. beechum1

    beechum1 Dandole Gas al Burro

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    Congratulations Guys!!!
  11. wittyusername

    wittyusername Baja Basketball

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    We finished our Baja shake down ride about 2 1/2 weeks ago and here's our last day's ride report from my perspective. I know it's been a while since we left Baja...and you might be thinking that I was dragging out these reports. But I wanted to give you all a reason to keep coming back to our thread!

    Day 5


    So here we are. In Ensenada at the Hotel Mission Santa Isabel. This was our last day and I'm thinking that I might just make it back to the trucks without breaking any major bones. I can deal with breaking a minor one though…that's not a big deal.

    Despite how exhausted and sore I am, I think I was the first person to wake up again. Actually, I think I rolled over on one of those stupid stickers and woke up early. Either way…I'm up. Lets ride!

    Our plan was to wake up early and get another full day of riding in before we head back to the trucks. That didn't happen. I think the week (and the beer) caught up with the gang and some of the crew decided to sleep in. No worries…let them sleep. It gave the rest of us time to find a descent cup of coffee.

    For those of you who don't know me, I have a healthy caffeine addiction. I was looking forward to eliminate the dull headache I had for the past 3 days from caffeine withdrawals. We sat outside and the sun felt good on my face. We met some ex-US-pats at the coffee shop. Older gentlemen. Turns out that all the men we met are veterans also.

    After a few minutes a straggler came to sit with his friends at the coffee shop. We scooted over to make room. This man was moving very slowly and had a nurse walking with him. He looked unhealthy. Like he should of been in a hospital breathing oxygen. I helped him into the chair.

    The first thing I noticed was the "Vietnam Veteran" hat he was proudly wearing. We learned that this man was an Air Force Combat Controller in Vietnam. If you don't know what that is…just know that I was honored to be in the presence of this warrior.

    We explained to our new friends why we were in Ensenada and what we were trying to accomplish for wounded vets. I felt a mutual unspoken wave of respect emanate from both groups. We finished our coffee, thanked them for their service, then headed back to the hotel to gear up for the day's ride.

    We're back at the hotel and the group is mostly complete. We walk from the hotel to the bridge near the start. It was only half a mile away. This is where the racers first hit dirt in the course. It's the real famous dirt wash that snakes through town. I had one of those stomach turning moments when I saw it. Like "the calm before the storm" kind of moments. It was so quiet. There were a few ferrel dogs laying in the dirt. I heard birds chirping. It was hard to imagine that in a few months this place would be the epicenter of controlled chaos.

    We snapped a few pictures then headed back to the hotel.

    Note…I'm dragging out the 'non-riding' portion of this ride report on purpose. Because we had a 2 1/2 hour late start!

    We're all geared up, packs loaded, bellies full, and we're ready to go. For the past few days Chris made it point to get my attention when he pressed his electric start button. I had a kick start and it was a pain in the neck. Since I was the rookie, I convinced myself I didn't "earn" an electric start yet. I took great joy in watching Chris's electric start button fail. I took even more joy in watching him kick his bike over and over and over and over…and over.

    So we're finally rolling and we cruise over to the dirt wash by the start that I was just talking about. This was awesome to ride on! I am so jealous that Brett's gonna be riding in the wash during the start. As I'm riding down the wash, through nasty standing water and under the bridges, I'm imaging how many Baja legends rode down the same exact route. It was a humbling feeling. It was a total "Dust to Glory" kind of moment for me. I think I even heard the theme music from "Dust to Glory" playing in my head.

    Sadly, we were only able to ride in the dirt wash for about 3 miles. Kind of anti-climatic. The vegetation was completely overgrown and it just wasn't passable. John told us that the race officials will remove all of the vegetation for the race. I hope so. In fact, there were a few gardeners chopping down some of the taller stuff as we rode by. I think I might of accidentally roosted one of them when I was trying to get unstuck out of the water. Mr. gardner if you're reading this, Lo siento. Please don't boobie trap the course because of my negligence.

    Allan (the point man) took us out of the dirt wash and led us around Ensenada for about 45 minutes. It was a nice scenic tour through every single back alley road and side street in Ensenada. This wasn't planned. We were, in fact, lost.

    We left Ensenada heading for Ojos Negros on the highway. Holy crap it was hot again. The kind of stupid hot where I was wondering who was going to be the first heat casualty. Luckily, no one.

    I can't remember the name of the town where we stopped to have lunch. Take one guess what we had…yup…tacos! I'm not complaining because they were fantastic. But I'm thoroughly impressed with how many taco stands there are in that country. I wonder how well a Taco Bell would do down there?

    Finally we're on dirt again. Allan took us down some single track that was pretty awesome. Lots of blind turns, ruts, and baby head rocks. I had my first and only crash of the day on the single track. Most of my falls didn't hurt too badly. The crash at night the other day hurt pretty bad but I recovered fairly quickly. This crash hurt. If you watched my crash montage video, it's the last crash.

    5 days earlier when I first met John and Allan we were talking about Baja strategy. They explained to us how important it is to never stop. It's critical to just keep the bike moving forward no matter what. That thought stayed with me through the week. Every time I'd crash, I made a conscience effort to jump back up on the bike as fast as possible. It's the whole, "train like you fight" mentality that I'm so used to.

    So after this stupid crash, I popped right back up and got the bike moving as quickly as possible. As I'm motoring on my elbow is throbbing. I shake it off and press on. John really had a great show this week. He was eye witness to all of my crashes.

    Allan mentioned several times about some water crossing coming that he was apprehensive about. It was a few miles ahead. He told us that every time he passes through this crossing that he comes out on the other side with bike problems. I shrug it off because I'm pretty much a badass moto expert by now. I'm thinking, "I got this". He also said that if there was any rain water in the area, then it'd be extremely difficult to pass. The area is prone to extreme flash flooding.

    Oh…I didn't mention yet that the sky was as black as Satan's as*hole ahead of us. Lightning was striking all over the place. I was, however, thankful that the distant rain storm cooled everything off.

    It starts to rain pretty hard and I'm cruising along nice and easy. No reason to push myself in this slippery mess. This was my first time on dirt in the rain. A lot of first this trip. Then all of a sudden I come up to a ranch house and I stopped right in front of it. The only reason I stopped is because Elvis the race bike is parked in the middle of the dirt road next to the ranch house…with Brett nowhere to be found. "That's weird", I'm thinking. "I wonder where Brett is."

    I can see a bunch of people sitting on the porch of the ranch but I can't tell if it's my crew. I don't see any motorcycles near the porch. I'm thinking, "Why would Brett leave his bike in the middle of the road and be sitting on the porch way over there?" Then it all became crystal clear to me…Brett came walking out from behind a rock carrying toilet paper. Suppose he would want me to leave that part out of the blog. hahah

    About 1/2 a mile after Brett's emergency fertilization stunt we arrived at the water crossing. Only it wasn't a water crossing. It was a flash flood! Allan was a few minutes ahead of the group and missed the flash flood entirely. In the few minutes that passed while we were catching up to Allan, the road turned into a gigantic raging river. It was insane. The entire valley was flooding.

    Remember how I mentioned that Chris was unstoppable. Yup…he made sure I was recording on my GoPro and throttled through about 300 meters of flash flood that was between 1' and 3' deep. And it wasn't just standing water…it was Colorado River raging rapid style water. I was impressed. So now the group is separated. Allan and Chris are down the road while Randy, Brett, John, and myself are on the near side.

    We rode the bikes up on some high ground thinking there would be a way around. Nope. We were stuck until the raging river subsided.

    Our helmets are off and we're laughing at the situation. After about 30 minutes we all start to get chilled. The temperature is falling and we start talking about emergency supplies. How much food/water we all had with us etc. Everyone is soaking wet. John pulled out one of those emergency space blankets. That gave us all a good laugh. John isn't a small man by any stretch of the imagination. I'm not saying he's fat….he's just a large man. It was hilarious seeing him wrestle with his stupid tiny astronaut blanket. I'm sure those things are useful…but not with this crowd. We're like piranhas…if we see a weakness it's exploited and made fun of relentlessly. He quickly crumpled up the stupid blanket and remained cold like the rest of us.

    I think we've all watched too many Bear Grylls episodes. Don't get me wrong, no one started drinking their own pee. At the exact moment where we're talking about staying warm and conserving energy….we see Chris walking down the middle of the raging river in his underwear. Maybe we're over thinking our 'survival situation'. hahah Chris lays down in the middle of the river and tries to swim upstream. (see my crash video for video of Chris trying to swim upstream). Pretty funny stuff.

    Anywhoo, it starts to rain harder so we turn around to seek shelter at the ranch we just passed. I'm hoping that the rancher doesn't turn us away because he's pissed about Brett crapping all over his rocks. Maybe he didn't see. The rancher lets us hang out under one of his over-head shelters. It wasn't a barn. Not sure how to describe it. But it had a metal roof and was the tallest structure in the area…perfect location to post up when lightning was crashing all around us. At least we were out of the rain.

    The rancher tells us to relocate to the adjacent building. Clearly he had more sense than us.

    30 minutes passed and we hear dirt bikes. Allan and Chris are heading towards us. I guess the raging river was gone. Now, if you don't know Allan, a great way to describe him is 'excitable'. He's a good travel companion because he's always in a good mood. He's a generally happy person. He's excited about everything…laughing and smiling all the time. When Allan met us at the ranch I saw a completely higher level of excitement that I didn't even know was possible by a human being. His voice was a pitch higher. He was laughing like a deranged hyena. I thought he was going to stroke out from joy. Allan went "full retard". "You never go full retard". (cite 'Tropic Thunder').


    Ok we're rolling again now. I wave 'gracias' at the rancher and we're off. The ruts created by the flash flood were insane. I made it through the nasty stuff without incident.

    We're only about an hour from the trucks. I was really just as excited the last hour of our ride as I was the first hour! I was riding on dirt in Baja!! Riding in the mud was pretty cool because I was able to see their tire tracks. I just followed their line. I saw when they got on the throttle and tried to follow suit. Aside from dodging the puddles, it was a pretty uneventful hour back to the trucks.

    We arrived back at Rancho Ojia where our trucks were parked. I handed out some team shirts for the team to wear then we snapped a few team pictures. Our faces are red and sun burned. The beer was cold. And laughing was plentiful. I didn't have any X-Large team shirts sewn up with tiger sleeves yet. All I had with me was size large. Sorry John. I promise to have team shirts to fit you for the race. Did anyone notice in the team picture that John was being suffocated by his shirt? hahaha

    Ok I hinted something about our Moose fender bags earlier in my update. I didn't want to spill the beans about the end result because the picture is just too damn funny. (See picture below) I'm sure Moose makes fine motocross gear. If a representative from Moose Racing reads this…I apologize but I have to say it. Every single Moose fender bag failed. Zippers opened up spilling out tools. Fast-tecs snapped. And one ripped off at the seam. I'm sure my 25 crashes had something to do with it. Out of all the tools I carried, I lost all but 4.

    We didn't have much time to reminisce about the week. Brett and I had to get back to Georgia as soon as possible. We opted not to shower in lieu of getting back on the road faster.

    Brett and I sat in traffic for 90 minutes waiting to cross the border then met John and Chris on the U.S. side. We transferred Elvis the race bike into his truck so he can give it to Ed. Ed had some parts to install on it and was going to finish dialing it in.

    It's finally dark. Brett and I are about an hour past the Mexican border. We've got a LONG ride ahead of us. I'm still bursting with excitement over the past few days. I'm pretty sure Brett is too. We're re-telling stores about the week and laughing like maniacs.

    I cannot wait to do all of this again in November.

    I'd be a liar if I said I didn't look up real estate in Ensenada. It's safe to say that I'm hooked. Like Allan told me the first day…Baja is a drug!!!!!!!!


    Here's the Hotel Mission Santa Isabel
    [​IMG]

    Finally! A descent cup of coffee!
    [​IMG]

    Here's the bridge by the dirt wash.
    [​IMG]

    Here's the gang in front of the dirt wash. (Left to right) Brett, Scott, Chris, Randy.
    [​IMG]

    The calm before the storm...
    [​IMG]

    That raging river back there was the road!
    [​IMG]

    "I don't think the heavy stuff is gonna come down for quite some time."
    [​IMG]

    Chris, like the mighty salmon, swims upstream.
    [​IMG]

    Scott and Brett seeking shelter during the storm.
    [​IMG]

    Total tools remaining = 4
    [​IMG]

    The team (lite)
    [​IMG]
  12. Mr Fast

    Mr Fast Slowly striving

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    332
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    Flagstaff, AZ
    This is John Sr checking in. Have been following your thread & of course getting stories from Jr. Would you believe that kid only weighed 160 when he graduated from high school? I look at his forearms now & always think of Popeye!
    I don't think you could have gotten a better break in to Baja than by Allan & John. I realize you probably wanted to kill Allan often & intensely but not any more than some of your instructors in Ranger school. Say what you will, that boy can ride. Big Ed is a great resource for you guys also as you will learn. We all love Baja. It's not a fatal infection but it is incurable. The only treatment & relief is to ride in The Baja. Best of luck to you guys & Graves Propane is going to kick in some bucks to help the way along. :clap
  13. azcagiva

    azcagiva new orange flavor

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    Apr 23, 2007
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    1,173
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    Camp Verde, AZ
    Alright, I will try to do a little training this time. I should be down to fighting weight by the time of the race. I lost 15lbs prerunning in 09. I wish that I at least would have had my eyes open for the pic, I forest gump pictures all the time.

    Will start prepping my prerun bike this weekend. I have a loop that I will be riding everyday after work to get some more seat time.

    Headed to baja tomorrow to check on our pre run headquarters.

    -John
  14. Cornbread82

    Cornbread82 Sir Crash A Lot!

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    Georgia
    Hey now easy on the Ranger Instructors, I don't think that any of the guys I put through Ranger School would want to kill me!!!! :D Now Allan on the other hand..................well lets just say that is another story...........:rofl
  15. wittyusername

    wittyusername Baja Basketball

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    South Florida
    If you're still reading this thread (all the way to page 13 now!) then I think it's safe to assume you're taking a personal interest in us and what we're doing. Thank you.

    I just submitted "Day 5" last night but wanted to submit this thought separately from the 'Day 5" post. I think it deserves its own attention as not to seem like an afterthought from 'Day 5".

    We met John and Allan on Adv through Ed. Unfortunately, Ed wasn't able to meet us down in Baja for the shake-down ride. We'll meet him in November.

    I wanted to thank John and Allan for everything they have done for us down in Baja. If you've read through my ride reports, you'll read that I goof on them from time to time. It's all in good fun. I have much respect for both of them. They both are a real class act. We couldn't have asked for better teammates.

    But really...Allan get rid of those shoes.
  16. wittyusername

    wittyusername Baja Basketball

    Joined:
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    I know that I'm a bit longwinded. We just cracked 15,000 views so I think people are interested in what we have to say. I just posted this on our website. I hope you like.


    This post is going to be a little different than all the rest. This isn't about team updates or upcoming fund raising events. Rather, I feel like I should share some team related 'checkpoints' I've recognized along our journey to the November starting line.

    I think it's important for the team to be viewed as regular people and not just mindless moto-riding robots who want your donations. I want people to be able to connect with us on a personal level. I want people to want us to finish the race. If the readers can relate to us on a personal level, I think they will be more inclined to share our story and our cause with other people.

    I'm going to share some personal beliefs that you may disagree with. By all means, please feel free to disagree…no one is going to chop your head off for having a different view point. Go USA! It's through my life experience that I've arrived at these beliefs. I will admit, however, that I don't have everything figured out but then again - does anyone?

    The title of this thread is called "checkpoints". A checkpoint is a marker or gate on a race course that you pass through which lets you know you're on the right track. This post isn't regarding motocross checkpoints. Rather, it's about checkpoints in life. I do believe there are checkpoints in life that let you know that you're on the right track. But you just need to have the ability to recognize them for what they are.

    When we're presented with a choice, there's a right and a wrong path. Most of the time the right and wrong choice isn't obvious at all. This is deeper than, "should I turn left or right.". It's more along the lines, "Should I leave my secure mediocre job in Hawaii to start contracting in Afghanistan?" The 'right' and 'wrong' will become evident much later in life in the form of regrets.

    The first time I became aware of these checkpoints was a few years ago while I was passing through DC on my way back to Afghanistan. I'll tell you the story of my first realization of life's checkpoints then tell you three checkpoints that I've recognized along the way to the starting line in Ensenada.

    Seeing my friend Dale in DC:*

    I had a full day to see some of the Washington DC sights before I was to deploy for work again. I was pretty excited because I haven't seen the monuments since I was a kid with my uncle Pete.I had a list of specific sights I want to check out. I wanted to see the Vietnam War Memorial Wall, Arlington Cemetery, The Abe Lincoln Memorial, The Washington Monument, and if there was time, the White House. I had a full day ahead of me. A lot of walking to do and I was kinda glad I was alone.

    First on my agenda was the Vietnam War Memorial Wall. Well, I got lost and ended up at Arlington Cemetery. It's like the car just wanted to go there first. "No problem", I'm thinking. "I'll just do this now."

    I spent 4 years in Ranger Battalion and completed multiple tours to Afghanistan and Iraq. In all of our deployments, our company (Attack Company) was fortunate to of only lost 2 Rangers. Rest in peace brothers Blessing and Pat. I wasn't terribly close to either of them but losing a Ranger is like losing a brother.

    Shortly after I got out of the Army in 2005, two of my very best friends were killed pretty violently in Iraq. This was a hard time in my life. So many questions were racing through my head. Naturally, I felt like I should of been there to watch their backs. But, I'm sure I'd be buried along side them in Arlington if I entered and cleared that room with them that night. Rick Barraza and Dale Brehm.

    So here I am at Arlington Cemetery on my way to visit one of my best friends for the first time since he's been laid to rest. It's already hard to breathe and I'm tearing up…and I'm just walking through the parking lot. This was going to be difficult. Deep breaths.

    I'm wearing sun glasses and I don't make eye contact with anyone. I feel like everyone knows why I'm there and is staring at me. Why else would a lone man visit Arlington…but to visit his dead friends. I was uncomfortable in the main lobby…my sun glasses were securely on my face. I looked at no one.

    I entered Dale's name in the electronic locator kiosk and it printed out a little map to my friend's final resting place. I didn't talk to anyone. I tear off the print-out and get stuck behind a large group of 8th graders all trying to squeeze through the double exit doors. I just needed to get out of that building. I felt like I was suffocating

    Finally I'm free and taking deep breaths. I'm walking to see my friend. I miss him. It's a very long walk through headstones as far as the eye can see. The rows of perfectly aligned head stones are quite shocking to me. So many young lives gone. So many families destroyed. As I'm walking to see Dale, I start to read the rest of the text on the print out I was carrying. In my rush*to get out of the building I didn't bother to read any of it.

    The print out had some personal information like his home town, his wife's name, unit served with, and his Killed In Action (KIA) date. It was 100+ degrees that day but shivers ran down my spine when I saw it. The breath was stolen out of my lungs. I stopped in my tracks and had to sit down. I was there on the 5 year anniversary of his death. I had no idea. I didn't realize the date.

    I consider myself to be tougher than average man. I do like all men should do…ball up my emotions and keep them locked up inside. But all of my strength couldn't hold back the tears. I was sobbing like a baby my myself on a bench on that bright sunny day in Arlington Cemetery. I was embarrassed but the people passing by were polite enough to ignore me.

    What were the odds I was there on his 5 year anniversary of his death? 5 years to the day I lost one of my brothers. It couldn't be a coincidence*that I was there on his 5 year anniversary. "What was happening", I thought. "This means something". It has to.

    I composed myself and finished my walk to his headstone. While walking to see Dale, this is where I first recognized life's 'checkpoints'. I've literally made millions of life decisions since deciding to leave the Army. But any choice other than the choices I made would not of put me standing in front of my friend's tombstone on his 5 year anniversary.

    Seeing Dale was extremely difficult but I took something positive from the experience. Every action I've taken and every choice I've made since leaving the Army was immediately validated. Any 'wrong' choice wouldn't of put me in front of Dale's tombstone on his 5 year anniversary. Checkpoint competed. I'm on the right course so far.

    I was very reluctant to share that story. It's a wildly intimate view into my personal world. Generally, I'm very private regarding my service. Most vets who've done anything are. Only a very select few people have heard that story. But I feel that it's a solid example of life's 'checkpoints' and so very fitting to what we're trying to accomplish with our race.
    I'm passionate about what were doing for wounded vets and I think we're on the right track. Sponsors are rolling in and we're approaching $10,000 in donations to the Wounded Warrior Project. We've met some amazing people along the way but we've also encountered some strange coincidences…that I don't think they are coincidences at all. It's a checkpoint!!

    Checkpoint #1

    Brett and I started this endeavor last January. By March (I think), our website was up and running. First up on the site was our "meet the team" biographies. We each received professional style e-mail handles. ourfirstname@raceforthewounded.com Cool…donations started to trickle in. We're actually a 'thing' now!!

    [Our] Brett Robinson received an e-mail from [other] Bret Robinson in his race e-mail inbox. Other Bret Robinson did a Google search of his name and found our Brett Robinson. Other Bret served in Iraq and was discharged for injuries sustained in combat operations. He was taking a break from helping plan his wedding and decided to Google his own name.

    What are the odds of this? Two Brett Robinsons who were also both disabled vets. How could this happen? This couldn't be a coincidence. It was just too weird. This was a checkpoint!

    We all talked about it for days. I had Terry mail other Bret some free Team TCB t-shirts as a wedding gift for him and his new wife.

    It's official - we were on the right track!

    Checkpoint #2

    I already mentioned this encounter in my 'Day 1' ride report. But I didn't comment on the significance of the event. Brett and I were road tripping from his house in Georgia to Mexico for our 5 day shake-down ride in Baja.

    We stop at a gas station in Baird, Texas to fill up and grab some Red Bulls. Brett and I wore our team shirts (with brown tiger stripe camo sleeves) all the way from Georgia to California. As you know, we have the "Team TCB" logo on the front of our shirts.

    Some dude's car was broken down and he asked us if he could borrow some tools. He saw our bikes and figured we'd have tools handy. Brett is under the hood with this guy turning a wrench and I'm goofing around on my iPhone wishing they'd hurry up.

    I look up and see it. Boom…this guy had our logo tattooed on his arm! TCB! I'm thinking, "Am I really seeing this?"
    TCB with the lightning bolt underneath was Elvis Presley unofficial logo. Elvis blasted that logo everywhere. If you don't already know, TCB stands for "Taking Care of Business".

    Anyway, I point it out and the dude says it's his family's motto. Said he got that tattoo "with his daddy when he was 14". He was shocked to see it on our shirt

    Another checkpoint maybe? What are the odds that we'd meet this guy in the middle of Nowhere, Texas. Surely this can't be a coincidence. Checkpoint completed!ts. He gave me permission to use his face in the blog and here it is.

    Checkpoint #3

    This checkpoint is just eerie. While Brett and I were driving across the country on our way to Mexico, we shared a lot of stories. Mostly about stupid or funny things we've done in the past. *It's amazing either one of us is still alive. Brett told me all about this high school buddy (Donnie) who would ride motorcycles with Brett. They'd get into all kinds of shenanigans.

    Brett told me that they lost track of each other years and years ago. Brett wondered what he was up to. It was left a that.

    While we're on our way back from Mexico to Georgia, Brett gets an e-mail from guess who…Donnie!! We were just talking about him! It's been like 25 years since Brett's even uttered his name.

    Here's how Donnie found Brett. Donnie was reading a book about JFK…the book talks about Lee Harvey Oswald…Brett's middle name is Lee…Donnie thought, "huh, I wonder what my old friend is up to."…Donnie Googled Brett's name…found a picture of Brett with Vera…which led him to our website…then he found Brett's race e-mail address. That's just too weird.

    And it turns out that Donnie works at a motorcycle shop. He immediately bought two t-shirts.

    This is just too strange to be a coincidence. To me, this is a checkpoint telling us that all the money and time we've invested in this race is what what we're supposed to be doing.

    Maybe I'm just trying too hard to justify all the money and time I've spent on this race. Or maybe I was just trying to make sense and cope with losing a friend in combat. Or just maybe, there's something to what I'm saying. I'd like to think there is. Either way, I'm (mostly) happy with where my life is headed. *I'm on the right path!
  17. Irish1

    Irish1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Oddometer:
    490
    Location:
    Paradise,CA
    We do have checkpoints in our lives: opportunities to change our directions professionally and emotionally and we have to listen to them. Thank you for sharing your story about Arlington: you honored your friend and fellow soldier by telling us. I'm still crying from the story as I write this. You and your crew are heroes for starting this project and starting this thread and your blog. :freakyI'll send money next month to help. :deal
  18. pfdskipper

    pfdskipper Westside Trash

    Joined:
    May 15, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,281
    Location:
    Litchfield Park, Az
    "What were the odds I was there on his 5 year anniversary of his death?"

    I'd say about 365 to 1 were the odds, but some things, and this qualifies as one of those things, certainly can defy logical explanation.

    I like your read on these aptly named "checkpoints" you have come across. Good on you to be aware enough to recognize these situations. I like to think that when similar situations occur in my life, that somehow, and I dont know just what that somehow is, that somehow I was connected on some level with whomever it was that the "checkpoint" situation related to, as in their life spirit was in the room. Kinda heavy shit, but I am diggin where you're shoveling from......I enjoyed your "lengthy" sharing of info..

    Enjoy the Baja and all the craziness that goes into making your endeavor happen. Sounds like you have things sorted and in the proper prespective. Bad shit that happens along the way builds us into what we are. Looks like your build is right on track!!
    :thumb
  19. cross-country

    cross-country .

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,767
    Location:
    Grand Junction, CO
    Powerfull stuff Scott.....thanks for sharing.
  20. dmaxmike

    dmaxmike former quadtard.

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Oddometer:
    881
    Location:
    Close to the groundhog, PA
    Just ordered a shirt. in for the race, and thank you for your service! <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>