My 5 year plan - Dakar in 2015!

Discussion in 'Racing' started by drc42, Oct 15, 2009.

  1. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    Edit: 11/28/09 - After all the feedback and a consideration as well as a talk with my wife on how we could fund this I have decided this is a 5 year plan instead of 10. I am now seriously planning on doing the Dakar in 2015!.
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    I have been kicking this idea around in my head for a while and with my 39th birthday tomorrow I decided it was time to share the plan with the ADV crowd.

    I would like to race the Dakar before I hit 50. That gives me 10 year to prepare.

    OK, this may be unrealistic. Either way having a goal to work for is a very good thing for me as the things I would need to do at this stage are worthwhile in themselves. By sharing the plan with you guys it hopefully will keep me motivated!

    So, I started breaking this down into steps.

    1. most important, of course is off road riding skills! This on is already in progress as I bought an IT200 (from fellow inmate EvilClown) a couple months ago. It is a good starter bike for the trails. I was out every weekend with it until I re-injured my knee (unrelated to the bike) which has me stuck back on the street on the KLR for now.

    this leads in to the next step

    2. Get my knee in shape!!! I have had issues for a while, nothing serious but needs some strengthening. Went to the doctor and got a referral to physical therapist. Once I strengthen the knees it should not be a problem.

    3. Get the rest of me in shape! I am healthy in general but certainly overweight. I need to drop at least 30 pounds. Also need to improve my endurance and strength to better control the bike and of course lessen the chance of injury. In a lot of ways this is the _real_ goal of the plan, Dakar is just the motivator to get me to do it!

    4. Start racing, thinking of doing some RallyMoto next year. Of course this means another bike :D since the KLR would not be great (but probably usable to get my feet wet) and the IT is a 2-stroke which RallyMoto doesn't allow. I am thinking a DRZ400 would be ideal.

    5. Find some good off-road skills training. Have thought this would be fun for a while regardless of the larger plan. Anybody have good suggestions on schools? Is there anything in the northeast? Seems this is a southwestern US thing mostly. Later on move on to more advanced training that includes rally navigation.

    6. More racing, should look into enduro racing perhaps. More riding, constantly try to improve the riding skiils, repeat, repeat repeat....

    7. Figure out how the hell I am going to finance this. Certainly not cheap. Start saving now. Not sure what the potential of some minor sponsorship would be for a guy like me. This is an advantage of starting early and racing a lot in the meantime.

    8. probably in 5 years or so start getting a little more serious about racing. Baja might be a good midway goal. Other desert races in the southwest would be key I think. Of course living in New Hampshire that is difficult to do many of these.

    Anyway, that's the plan. Sure, might be unrealistic but you gotta dream. My wife is even onboard with this, mostly because she keeps telling me I need to get into shape, but also she understands the dream. :clap

    So, if you guys do not hear from me making actual progress come kick me in the ass and get me moving! EvilClown knows where I live:eek1
    #1
  2. craigincali

    craigincali Just hanging around

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    I am gonna be 40 soon too. After reading your well thought out plan I honestly think you should try to cut that 10 plan to a 5 or 6 year plan. If you are committed you can get in shape in one year. There are plenty of great training classes you can take to improve your riding quickly and lets face it you arent getting any younger.

    The only reason I say 5 to six years is:

    1) your age
    2) its hard to stay committed to something so far off in the future
    3) your age
    4) life, you never know what curve ball life has instore for you
    5) really, do you honestly think at 50 you will be able to do it, honestly??? I dont know you, maybe you can but, you need to be honest with yourself.

    I am definately not trying to discourage you. Just the opposite, I think if you are truely dedicated you can do it in 5 to 6 years!!!
    #2
  3. Beez

    Beez Given to fly

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    Aaaah so you have Evil Clown's cousin IT. :lol3 Good luck with your dream! :thumb I'd suggest joining NETRA and running enduros and hare scrambles, those will get you a lot of seat time and help your endurance. RallyMoto will help with speed but the events are few and from what I gather there is a lot of waiting around between stages so it's not as good for endurance training.
    #3
  4. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    You callin me old! After a nap I will give you a scathing reply, us old guys need a lot of naps:huh

    Serously though you do make good points, considering my physical shape now compared to when I was 30 if I extrapolate out to 50 it doesn't look good. My 2 big reasons for making it a 10 year plan are experience and money. Perhaps I could accumulate enough of both in 5 years.
    #4
  5. dfeckel

    dfeckel Adventurer

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    That sounds awesome. I also think you won't necessarily need 10 years to gain enough riding skill to do dakar. I started riding dirtbikes in 2007 and ECEA enduros in late 2007. To date, I've run maybe ten of them? I've done a bunch of fun rides in addition, and I can't believe how much my riding has progressed in such a short timeframe. I don't think I'll ever be an A rider, but in the short time I've been riding, my skills have increased incredibly. I think five to six years of committed riding in an enduro series will be plenty to get your skills up to the point where you can ride the conditions of the Dakar rally. The real question is physical stamina. Drop the pounds and everything you do becomes easier. Think about a personal trainer?
    #5
  6. canadaler

    canadaler Been here awhile

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    Don't let the "magic" number 50 put you off...I tried my first rallye...which of course is minor compared to the Dakar...at 52.

    Having said that...(money aside)...if you aren't ready for it in 5 years...I doubt another 5 will make a difference.

    Go for it :clap
    #6
  7. sonicapollo

    sonicapollo Adventure Addict

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    I'd do the Heroes Legend or B2B instead.
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  8. Hay Ewe

    Hay Ewe Just a Wannabe

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    Yeah, the Dakar is legendary but there are also plenty of other rallyes

    don't leave it so long, like was said earlier, you can get in shape in 2 years, learn to ride in the same time (learn to ride off road etc) and get the moeny together

    set realistic goals - the minimum is to finish remember!

    good luck
    Hay Ewe
    #8
  9. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    Thanks for all the replies, yes I should probably consider pushing for a 5 year instead of 10 year plan. Part of the magic 50 age was I hope to retire at that age and am thinking this would be one hell of a way to go into retirement! If I knew my job would be waiting at the end I would consider taking a year off to prepare and then go back to work (and delay retirement for a few years).

    With either the 5 year or 10 year plan my first step is to get myself into shape. So, in the interest of keeping myself on track I need to start setting some early goals. I weighed myself and I currently at 213 pounds. That is 96kg for those of you in the parts of the world who don't use the antiquated measurement systems, it is 15 stone for you silly brits:D.

    My fancy scale says I am about 30% body fat, but I don't know how accurate this thing is. Regardless of the specific number I hope to see this falling over time as well.

    So, my current goal is to get down to 203 by the end of the year. 10 pounds should be reasonable (1 pound a week).

    If I am not updating this thread with progress come find me and kick my ass!
    #9
  10. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    Oh, and of course more riding goes along with getting in shape, but that part is easier to stay motivated for.:evil
    #10
  11. rallye

    rallye Been here awhile

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    if your serious about doing the Dakar or other rallies ,motivation will not be a problem !
    #11
  12. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    Yes, still focused on the goal. It has only been a month but I feel fitter. I weighed myself at 209 pounds today so that part of the goal is right on track. Honestly not doing too well with eating better but been getting a LOT of exercise. Been doing some hiking (with knee brace) and a bunch of strength exercises.

    My knee is still hurting at times. I started physical therapy last week and that does seem to be helping. The therapist gave me some exercises and stretches to work on. Flexibility has always been an issue for me so I have been working on the stretches around 4-5 times a day. Big improvements there, I touched my toes for the first time since I was 12!

    As far as riding I have not had much opportunity. I did get out for a few hours on the IT200 a few weeks ago but between the short days and the bum knee I have not been out otherwise.

    Been dreaming about how much better I will be able to control the bike if I am 30 pounds lighter and a lot stronger. I need to set a goal for when the public trails open up in the spring.
    #12
  13. decafe

    decafe Been here awhile

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    I have same dream but the money for dakar is isane i was thinking the buget baja 500 or 1000 . all said and done dakar will probably run 50 grand plus no income for 2 months but hey if i didnt have kids and awife id want to go with you..
    #13
  14. Seth S

    Seth S Will _____ for _____

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    Consider doing Dos Sertoes. Its still a long rally and takes place in South America. The entry fee is a lot more manageable then the Dakar. Also consider doing a multi day enduro or desert race before hand so you can get a handle on what it feels like to ride hard day after day after day.
    #14
  15. Indo2002

    Indo2002 Been here awhile

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    You'll need to be hard as nails to ride at pace in the Dakar for 14 days. Once you've got your basic core fitness sorted find a local crossfit gym. They'll have you eating broken glass and rusty nails in no time.:lol3

    www.crossfit.com

    Cheers
    #15
  16. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    I am lucky to have a very supportive wife. Also I have no kids so the money I spend on toys are for MY toys :D.
    #16
  17. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    My plan is to start with some small enduro races next summer then hopefully some multi-day events the next year (or this year if I find any).

    Anybody know of any multi-day events in the northeast? I certainly need to get out to the southwest to try to race in the desert as well but due to the distance I will likely only be able to do 1 of those a year.

    As far as the Dos Sertoes I have to admit that if I am going to do a big rally it will be _the_ big one. Gotta be _the_ Dakar.
    #17
  18. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    I had not heard of them but it does sound like some really intense training! Looks like there is one right in the area as well. Most certainly beyond me at this point but in a year or so perhaps.

    I went for a big hike today with my wife. That is more my speed at this point. Getting good exercise with the hiking and I think it is starting to help strengthen my knee.

    Here is where we went today, for those of you in the New Hampshire area I highly recommend this hike, great views of Lake Winnepesaki from the top.

    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/19341104
    #18
  19. lastplace

    lastplace Been here awhile

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    Talk to my brother Dave. He lives in Canterbury, NH and finished the 2005 Dakar. When you are ready, come out to one of our Rally Schools. Let me know how I can help. We can do anything from a turn-key rally package to just answering some technical questions via email or phone. We like to help. I agree that a smaller rally is a good first step, especially if you can afford it.

    fun fun
    Charlie
    #19
  20. drc42

    drc42 Rally Dreamer

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    Yes, you guys are certainly on my "to call" list for when I get closer! I was looking at your web pages and certainly think going with the full support package is the way to go. The logistics of getting the bike set up and to the rally alone would be critical, not to mention the fact the Dakar organization recognizes your rally school as approved experience to enter the Dakar.

    I would be VERY interested in talking first hand with an actual Dakar finisher! Especially someone local like that. Is he also an ADV member? If so can you PM his info to me?

    BTW, got my Riff Raff Kilm jacket in the mail today! Very nice :clap
    #20