WorldRider: 81 Countries & Counting…The Journey Continues....

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by worldrider, Jul 21, 2005.

  1. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    Southern California Presentation This Weekend!
    BMW Motorcycles of Ventura County.

    <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/photos/IMG_1325.jpg"><img src="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/photos/IMG_1325-tm.jpg" width="500" height="280" alt="IMG_1325.jpg" /></a></p>
    <p>While I've been working and hanging out in Southern California, I am excited for two reasons. First, I'm pleased that my adventure motorcyclist friend, Daniel Robla from Argentina is visiting me for a few days here in California. It's been nearly four years since I last saw him in Argenina in Buenos Aires. We traveled together in Chile and northern Argentina, and then reconnected at his home in the province of Buenos Aires, and still later in the city and for a side trip to Cordova. Daniel is on a short trip, this time by car, through the western States. We spent some time yesterday in Del Mar, La Jolla and Encinitas.</p>
    Perhaps most exciting for anyone who hasn't had a chance to see my presentation, I'm looking forward to meeting customers and friends of BWM Motorcycles of Ventura County. This presentation will be my first presentation in Southern California in six months and perhaps the presentation closest to Western Los Angeles. So if you don't have any plans this Thursday evening come out and say hi! The presentation usually last about an hour and there's usually 45 minutes or so of questions. As usual, we'll giveaway an AirHawk seat cushion and perhaps other goodies.</p>
    <p>You can check out the <a href="http://www.bmwventura.com/default.asp" target="_blank">BMW of Ventura Motorcycles website</a> or <a href="http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=152854941445837" target="_blank" title="Allan Karl at BMW Motorcycles of Ventura County">Facebook event page</a> for more information. You can RSVP on Facebook or simply call the dealership at 805.499.3770 -- http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=152854941445837

    <b>WorldRider: Around The World On A Motorcycle<br /></b>Thursday, May 19 - 6:30pm - 9:00pm<br />
    BMW Motorcycles of Ventura County
    839 Tourmaline Drive
    Newbury Park, California
    <b>805.499.3770

    I hope to see those of you who can make the time and come out and see me this Thursday evening -- it's sure to be interesting, entertaining and always lots of fun and good banter!</p>
    See you there!</p>
    <b><i>Photo Above?</i></b> <i>Daniel kicks my butt in a little alfresco chess match on the streets of La Jolla</i></p>

    SoCal WorldRider Presentation Thursday May 19 BMW Motorcycles of Ventura County
  2. Transeurope

    Transeurope n00b

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Bavaria, Germany
    Hello Allan,
    great to have a first contact for me in the advrider-world after meeting you more than 3 years ago on your last day of your world trip in Turkey. Hope to meet you in future - like 2008 with our motorbikes on the road.
    Chris
    www.transeurope.de
  3. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    Take Me To Turkey & Beyond the Iran Curtain

    Chris -

    So good to see you here on ADVrider. Say hi to Ursula. I remember our time together nicely, along the lake outside Istanbul. You were just back from Iran and I had been turned down thrice for entry into that country.

    Yes, we will meet on the road again. In Europe. Or if things change, in Iran.

    Enjoy Belarus, Minsk and your summer travels. You are the true Transeurope motorcycle traveler!!!

    Here you are in Turkey!

    smiles

    Attached Files:

  4. Transeurope

    Transeurope n00b

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Bavaria, Germany
    Hi Allan,

    thanks for your answer and the picture, it was a great trip!!!

    Christian
  5. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    Yes. It was and is a great trip!!! See you soon my friend. Soon!
  6. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    Fear.
    <p>Last week I was discussing and upcoming speaking engagement with a client when the topic transitioned to my presentation and how I could help my client with my speech to my real-life experiences on the road. The topic quickly folded into a subject that most people I speak with tend to share the same curiosity. They usually want to know if at any point during my travels if I felt that I was in danger or if I was afraid.</p>
    <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/IMG_2380.JPG - Version 2.jpg"><img src="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/IMG_2380.JPG - Version 2-tm.jpg" width="300" height="225" alt="IMG_2380.JPG - Version 2.jpg" /></a> <img src="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/IMG_2074.JPG.jpg" width="337" height="225" alt="IMG_2074.JPG.jpg" /></p>
    <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/IMG_2208.JPG.jpg" width="600" height="450" alt="IMG_2208.JPG.jpg" /></p>
    <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/iringa2daresalaam54.jpg" width="600" height="450" alt="iringa2daresalaam54.jpg" /></p>
    <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://www.worldrider.com/blog/zanzibar11 - Version 2.jpg" width="600" height="376" alt="zanzibar11 - Version 2.jpg" /></p>
    <p>People ask this question for many good reasons. But I think most feel that perhaps they would like to embark on some sort of adventure or travel, but perhaps are afraid to take a chance; to risk their current state of being—their comfort zone. Understandably, their curiosity perhaps stems from wondering whether such fears are founded.</p>
    <p>My usual response to these curious queries is, no I never felt in danger or fear for my life in my three years of solo travel on a motorcycle. But as my client probed further for insight into my travel adventures, he asked "What about dangerous roads or terrain, were you ever afraid in that way?"</p>
    <p>I scratched my head, took a quick gander out the window and confided to him, that yes, I was afraid on a number of occasions.</p>
    <p>To be sure, he knew that I crushed my leg on a muddy road in Bolivia during the trip. He knows that a bus roaring into my lane on a downhill turn on a dirt road in Ethiopia caused me to crash. And he certainly knows that a small taxi van pushed me off the road in Tanzania. But in each of these cases I wasn't afraid. The crashes, for the most part, happened so fast that I had no time to think or react.</p>
    <p>Though then I started thinking. That's when I remembered some scary episodes while riding at night I found myself tense, white-knuckled and fearing that I might not make it to my destination before crashing—or worse.</p>
    <p>It's funny, many of these episodes involved wet and rain conditions at night.</p>
    <p>Like the time I was heading north toward Maceió in northern Brazil. I planned to arrive at this beautiful seaside city before sunset when the rain pelted me and slowed me down. Soaked and cold and with no visibility—no lines on the dark, wet and jet black tarmac. No street lights. And the headlight of my bike barely any use. The rain beaded on my visor and every 30 seconds I had to swipe the water off of it with my soppy wet glove. As the minutes and hours clicked on, the rain made me wetter and wetter. My visibility so impaired that I had to strain, squint and slow to a crawl just to make sure I didn't ride off the tarmac, because it was so dark and just blended into the landscape. Then I found myself winding through gentle rolling hills lined with sugar cane plantations. On the road I had to be careful when rounding curves because trucks that carried harvested cane to ethanol processing plants would drop pieces of cane on the road. Like banana peels I'd often catch on a slip and slide. These trucks would also appear out of nowhere, sometimes pulling out in front of me and magically appearing our of the darkness of the tall sugar cane plants. Most of these trucks were carrying three trailers, each packed with cane. Most of the time only dim headlights shined on the road ahead. Barely visible I had to be careful that they'd either hit me or I'd run into the back of them. There were no reflectors or tail lights. That night was unforgettable and one of the most tiring rides of my entire three years. I was afraid and scared I might not make it.</p>
    <p>Trying to make it to Iringa Tanzania from the border of Tanzania turned out to be another harrowing night. When tarmac becomes wet and the sun fades into night, the pavement fades again into the horizon and trying to see the difference between pavement and vast emptiness of desolate landscapes becomes the most important task of riding. The rain poured and even protected in the confines of my rain suit, I felt trapped and blind. The bright streams of lights from oncoming traffic would detract like a star filter through the drops of rain on my visor creating a massive blind-spot that would haunt me as I rode the twisty track. Drainage on African roads is nonexistent, so I would wade through two and three foot high flooded roads, once amazed at the thousands of frogs who sprayed off the wake of my front tire as I rode through. The sounds of the gurgling frogs actually drowned the noise of falling rain.</p>
    <p>I was afraid then, too.</p>
    <p>After I crushed my leg in a slippery fall on muddy clay like dirt, the muddy dirt roads of South Africa, particularly near the Drakensburg scared me too. Like a slivering snake, there is nothing more scary to me than lack of traction on wet clay. I can see no difference between it and ice. Though I would rather ride on ice. Mud, stay away.</p>
    <p>At the beginning of my trip I was still haunted and spooked by the notion of bandits in Mexico. Caught in the dark and still 30 miles from the closest village. tense and stressed, and still unable to see through the dark forests of Michoacán, my heart beat fast every time a car came up from behind.</p>
    <p>Even as fear tried to suffocate my spirit and crush my confidence in these incidences, I made it through. And with each incident I became a stronger foe to fear. And while fearlessness is unhealthy, balance and prudence is key; as is your attitude and the compromise you make with fear so that you don't let it get the best of you and in turn, you don't due anything stupid or internal that would upset the balance of strength and fear.</p>
    <p>As far as traveling as I did to any of the places I traveled? There's no reason to be afraid. There's nothing to fear.</p>
  7. ThomasVolomitz

    ThomasVolomitz New Old Stock

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4,556
    Location:
    NE Ohio
    What an awesome thread- thanks. Subscribed.
  8. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece

    Rasthomas -- Glad you're aboard and thanks for the good words. Enjoy. It always gets better!

    smiles,

    Allan
  9. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    [​IMG]

    Dakar From A Spectator & Team Point of View

    The WorldRider adventures continue, as I just returned from another three weeks in some of my favorite countries: Argentina, Chile and Peru. I was recruited by a private US-based team to provide translating as necessary, photography and to document the trials and tribulations of Dakar.

    My goal was to connect with American teams as outside our ADVrider and motorcycling community, when it comes to racing most of the non-informed think of NASCAR as THE motorsport.

    Having watched and followed Dakar for many years, I glommed onto the idea of a temporary gig on a team.

    Though I spent some 14 nights in the Dakar Bivouac, the constant schedule, fast-paced moves and the sheer numbers of residents—sometimes topping 2,500 in the Bivouac, I never ran into Ned Suesse, our fellow ADVrider Dakar legend, in the Bivouac. Though I did catch him whizzing by me on stage now and again. I'll post photos as I begin to add the stories of Dakar.

    We all know the results by know, Ned the only American biker who finished, and Darren Skilton and Robby Gordon the only American cars that finished. My posts here will cover some of the race action, but also the drama from a team point of view.

    I trust you'll enjoy the stories as I'll do my best to present in the classic WorldRider narrative. So I hope you enjoy.

    Big congratulations to Neduro - Ned Suesse - as unless you've spent any time in the Bivouac or on stage, it's impossible to have any true idea of what it's like to race Dakar. And on a bike!!!!!! Good god. I think 7 or 8 Americans started the race on two wheels, but only one finished! Our very own Neduro. So while I wish I saw you in the Bivouac and had a chance to interview and chat, I was with you in spirit and caught you in the lens of my camera -- rooting and cheering and making bets that you'd finish. And you did! There's no other greater accomplishment a motorcyclists can claim.

    Yeah, so I rode around the world. But you, Ned, you finished Dakar.

    I hope everyone enjoy the stories from Dakar 2012!
  10. Codewheeney

    Codewheeney Callipygian Super Supporter

    Joined:
    May 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    4,540
    Location:
    Morgan Hill, CA
  11. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    <div class="single_post_content">

    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0474-Version-2.png" alt="" width="550" height="" border="" align="center" />


    <div class="entry">
    <p>While most of the country is recovering from the recent holiday, flocking to the malls for returns and sales or simply enjoying the last days of the year with family and loved ones, Robb &amp; Tara Rill and the entire Darkcyd Rally Racing team are busy making final preparations for their flights to Buenos Aires, Argentina. The South American excursion will be the third for the Darkcyd team, but only the first to compete in the legendary Dakar off-road rally race.</p>
    <p>While the preparations have been underway for more than six months, and the last three months with busy weekly meetings and conference calls, the race is down to the wire. Tension, apprehension and excitement all can describe the mood hovering over the team. But anxiety is where everyone sits here the day after Christmas 2012.</p>
    <h3>Where&#8217;s The Desert Warrior?</h3>
    <p>At the end of last month the Desert Warrior, Darkcyd&#8217;s entry into The Dakar 2012 edition was delivered to its shipping agent/firm: Bulent in Florida. The cars should&#8217;ve arrived in Buenos Aires via ship earlier this month. However, something went wrong on the shipping docks. The Desert Warrior wasn&#8217;t loaded on the ship on time. It had to be loaded on a later ship. Anxiety has been high because the shipping company informed the team the ship &#8220;should&#8221; arrive on the 24th of December.</p>
    <p><span class="pullquote quotes alignleft">I don&#8217;t know if our ship has arrived&#8230; or if our car and assistance vehicle will make it Argentina on time <cite>&ndash; Allan Karl</cite></span><br />
    This new discovery didn&#8217;t bode well for the team. Getting any vehicle in and out of customs in a foreign country is a test of patience, time, logistics and sanity. Top that off with Argentina&#8217;s full holiday schedule making the port shut down for the most of the last days of the month. Plus, the Desert Warrior must be in Mar del Plata, several hours southwest of Buenos Aires, by the 29th in order to go through scrutineering and inspection to be qualified to race. If we don&#8217;t make our allotted time, we could be turned away at the starting line. And all this preparation and emotion for naught&#8212;not to mention the incredible cost and investment the team has expended in getting ready for the race.</p>
    <p>As I sit and pen this update, I don&#8217;t know if our ship has arrived&#8230; or if our car and assistance vehicle will make it Argentina on time. The shipping office is closed. Customs isn&#8217;t answering the phone. And locals driving by the port at our request can&#8217;t make sense the ships: they all look the same and are very difficult to make out the registration numbers and names. The only way we&#8217;ll know, is when we arrive.</p>
    <p>Tomorrow is flight day for the six person Darkcyd Racing Team. Robb, Tara, Ben, Raff and Bill will leave from Miami on Tuesday the 27th of Decebmer and arrive in Buenos Aires on Wednesday morning at 7am. Allan will fly from San Diego to Dallas and then switch planes in Dallas and arrive just a couple hours after the rest of the team at 9:15am. We&#8217;ve been working closely with an incredible support team on the ground in Buenos Aires, including Darîo Saidman, a photographer Allan met while on his motorcycle in Argentina several years ago. Darîo is procuring supplies and arranging security for the vehicles, while another support person, Pablo Cariddi who has been arranging transportation, talking with the rental car companies and helping with telecommunications logistics.</p>
    <p>There&#8217;s no question an effort for a private, non sponsored team to compete in Dakar is massive. The coordination and logistics painstakingly detailed. If every tiny issue isn&#8217;t handled, checked off the list or attended to, the entire race and success of the team is at stake.</p>

    <p>Stay tuned. We&#8217;re hoping our ship has come in.</p>
  12. KTM265

    KTM265 Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,043
    Location:
    Iowa
    This should be good...I was wondering when the next chapter would come online...:freaky
  13. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    12/27/2011 5:48PM: Update From Dallas/Fort Worth Airport


    This is just a quick note as I wait to board my plane to Buenos Airew. I heard from Rob and it appears that the shipping company has let us know that customs will have the car cleared in time. But yet this is South America and Argentina we shall know more when we land. I will be connecting with them on the ground and from their reporting back on this blog.

    12/28/11 - 8:39AM: Arrived In Buenos Aires &#8212; Container Has Cleared Customs.
    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0742.jpg" alt="" width="550" height="" border="" align="center" />

    Another note to keep you updated as to our progress here in South America. The entire Darkcyd Rally Racing Team arrived in Buenos Aires early this morning. After several hours of phone calls to the shipping agent and the port, and running around Buenos Aires securing supplies, cell phones and exchanging enough cash to pay for gasoline (diesel fuel) during the rally, we finally were called to the Port at 5pm Buenos Aires time and Robb, Raff, Bill and our local fixer, Pablo, are at the port retrieving the vehicles.

    Soon they&#8217;ll bring them into the city where they&#8217;ll tweak and adjust the vehicles before heading to Mar del Plata tomorrow morning for a 6:30am start. So far all looks good.
  14. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    <b>The Dakar Test Weighs Heavy on Darkcyd Team</b><p>
    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/themes/modular/lib/scripts/thumb.php?src=http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0751.jpg&w=614&h=236&zc=1&q=100 " alt="Darkcyd Racing Desert Warrior" width="550" height="" border="0" align="" />


    As I boarded my plane in San Diego, I knew there was a shadow of a doubt that ship carrying the Desert Warrior and the T5 assistance vehicle might not make it on time, factoring the time it takes to clear customs and the team’s need to make its Friday early AM appointment for inspection and scrutineering with the Dakar organization in Mar del Plata, a seaside resort some 4 hours southwest of Buenos Aires. Top that off with the fact that Argentina celebrates holiday from the 24-26th of December. Nothing gets done on holiday.

    Failure to get the ship and meet our deadline would mean disqualification from the race and the massive expense, energy and excitement for naught.

    When I received word from Robb during my one-hour layover in Dallas that the ship was due to arrive and that the shipping and clearing agent was confident the container and vehicles would be cleared the morning of our arrival.

    Our assistant “fixer” a local accountant and friend Cristian, my buddy from Chile, met the entire team at the airport. However, by 10am we had no confirmation that our container cleared customs. At 2pm while running around downtown Buenos Aires, we were still waiting. Everyone could sense the tension in Robb. It seemed every fifteen minutes he’d ask Pablo to call the shipping and clearing agent. No matter the number of calls, by 3:30 we still had no word.

    Sometime after 4pm we were told to head to the warehouse where our container would land after clearing customs at the port. Robb, Raff, Bill and Pablo headed to the warehouse while the rest of us waited at the hotel for the arrival of the Desert Warrior and T-5 assistance vehicle.

    At 7:20pm the vehicles rolled up to our hotel here in Retiro, one of the more affluent sections of Buenos Aires. Due to the height and length of the T5 Assistance vehicle, a Chevy S-2500 HD fitted with extra racks, tool boxes and more, we were unable to park in the hotel garage. Thanks to Dario, our other fixer and friend in Buenos Aires, had a back up garage set up just across from the hotel.

    As Ben fired up the engine and planned to pull the newly renovated and customized Desert Warrior into the garage, he pushed in the clutch, the pedal just dropped to the floor. What? He pressed again. Nothing. Raff noticed fluid oozing down the Buenos Aires street. The Desert Warrior sat on the side of the rode like a prized trophy, nothing more. The hydraulic system that activates the clutch, the slave cylinder, it seems blew a seal. Raff shook his head. This wasn’t the first time this happened. As the team prepared the vehicle months ago, it did the same thing. So Raff and team replaced the cylinder and all the seals.

    So what happened? Good questions. The better questions is: “Can we fix this, get the car to inspection and be approved to race by Friday morning. It’s Wednesday nearly midnight. It’s our first day in Buenos Aires. We know this is a grueling race. We know that fewer than 35% of those who start ever make it to the finish line. Could we be one of the few that never makes it to the starting line?

    For the race to Dakar and the Darkcyd Racing Team, it shouldn’t start this way. We’re in trouble and we haven’t even recovered from our long flights.

    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/drtdw1.jpg" alt="" width="" height="" border="" align="" />


    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/dcrtdw2.jpg" alt="" width="550" height="" border="" align="" />


    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0751.jpg" alt="" width="550" height="" border="" align="" />

    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/dcrtdw3.jpg" alt="" width="550" height="" border="" align="" />
    Our Fixer in Buenos Aires, Pablo Cariddi grabs the wheel of the Desert Warrior.
  15. KTM265

    KTM265 Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,043
    Location:
    Iowa
    Recovered from your flights??? Heck, you haven't even recovered your bags...
  16. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    <object width="549" height="309"><param name="allowfullscreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><param name="movie" value="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=34315913&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;show_title=1&amp;show_byline=0&amp;show_portrait=0&amp;color=cccccc&amp;fullscreen=1&amp;autoplay=0&amp;loop=0" /><embed src="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=34315913&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;show_title=1&amp;show_byline=0&amp;show_portrait=0&amp;color=cccccc&amp;fullscreen=1&amp;autoplay=0&amp;loop=0" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" width="549" height="309"></embed></object>

    Darkcyd Owner and Driver Robb Rill discusses problems with the teams entry into the 2012 Edition of the legendayr Dakar Rally Raid Race in South America
  17. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/themes/modular/lib/scripts/thumb.php?src=http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5479.jpg&w=614&h=236&zc=1&q=100" title="Making The Way To The Bivouac &#8211; Mar del Plata" alt="" width="614" height="236" alt="" width="" height="" border="" align="" />


    <h2 class="post_title">Making The Way To The Bivouac &#8211; Mar del Plata</h2>



    <div class="entry">
    With the clutch issue hanging over the team&#8217;s head, there were a few more loose ends to tie up before heading to Mar del Plata, a beachside Argentinean resort city about a five hour drive from the capital, Buenos Aires. Because Tara and I would be monitoring the Dakar rally as press, we are required to have our own vehicle. This vehicle would be inspected by Dakar officials to ensure it meets the safety standards as well as it would be marked with the same decals and stickers as the racer cars, trucks and support vehicles.</p>
    <p>We learned that conditions on the bivouac, the command center for the rally, were extremely rough, Robb had arranged to lease a small RV/camper so that life on the bivouac would be more comfortable for Tara as well as a quieter and more comfortable place to sleep for the sure to be exhausted driver and co-driver. For Tara, her concern was a clean and private bathroom. However, renting the RV in Argentina was no easy task. It would need the documentation for crossing the borders of Chile and Peru. And we needed to arrange to have the RV delivered back to Argentina from Lima Peru.</p>
    <p><span class="pullquote3 quotes alignright">When the guy showed us how to dispose of the the waste, Tara had to step away. I thought she was going to get sick. </span><br />
    All these issues were handled with some degree of difficulty, so we agreed that Raff and Bill would leave early in the AM towing the injured Desert Warrior behind, while Robb, Tara, Ben and I would take taxis (yes, we need two to carry all of us and our supplies) to pick up the RV. Plus, we decided to bring along my friend Dario who could be our Argentina Ambassador in Mar del Plata and help source anything we needed or help solve problems.</p>
    <p>The look on Tara&#8217;s after she saw the RV expressed more than disappointment&#8212;horror. A simple but sad case of expectations not being met. The RV arrangements were made by one of Robb&#8217;s employees and photographs Tara had seen on the internet showed a built in bathroom. The RV that was being cleaned and prepped as we arrived at 8am on Thursday morning provided for a nice portable toilet &#8212; one that sits on the ground with privacy provided by a canvas booth that extends like an awning from the side of the RV.</p>
    <p>When the guy showed us how to dispose of the the waste, Tara had to step away. I thought she was going to get sick. Robb did everything he could to try to switch to a different RV, but all the RVs were leased, besides, it would be impossible to get the documentation for border crossings for a different vehicle in our very tight time frame.</p>
    <div id="attachment_2366" class="wp-caption alignleft" style="width: 310px"><a href="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5474.jpg" rel="lightbox[2343]" title="IMG_5474"><img class="size-medium wp-image-2366" style="margin-top: 5px; margin-bottom: 5px; margin-left: 8px; margin-right: 8px;" title="IMG_5474" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5474-300x200.jpg" alt="" width="300" height="200" /></a>
    <p class="wp-caption-text">Robb expresses some tension as another driver, David, discusses particulars and suggestions.</p>
    </div>
    <p>The RV company was very thorough and detailed in explaining how to operate the jack, where the spare tires were and emergency reflector signs and more. But they did forget to tell this group of foreigners one thing. With Ben behind the wheel, we were pulled over by the highway police just an hour south of the RV company. The young lady in a loose police uniform yet with big brown eyes explained that Ben would be served an infraction and assessed a fine (a &#8220;multa&#8221; in Spanish) because he was driving without headlights. On national highways it is required to drive with lights. Nobody told us this. So we put our Argentinian ambassador to work, and Dario managed to bribe the officer for about $25 rather than the $300 she originally requested. The brown-eyed policewoman stuffed the bills in her pants.</p>
    <p>At the bivouac in Mar del Plata the desert warrior was already on jack stands and sitting above the ground like some sort of space age hovercraft. Bill and Raff scuttled around with the stress oozing from their pores. This is not what <span class="pullquote3 quotes">After more than 4 hours the Desert Warrior was lowered back to earth and tested&#8212;but the clutch was slipping</span>they expected to do here. There was a long list of loose ends they hoped to address. instead, they had to fix the clutch problem. Thankfully, the contracted support team from Rally Raid UK was there to support our team. Between them they realized because of the new clutch, gap between the slave cylinder and the master cylinder was too much. Rally Raid UK techs suggested spacing it out about 3mm to close the gap.</p>
    <p>While the team worked on the clutch, Tara and I proceeded through the long process of getting our press credentials. Like a kid on a scavenger hunt we were handed a document, they called it a passport, and directed us to a large tent filled with about 20 booths staffed by Dakar officials and others. We had to go to each booth/table and either go through a doctrinaire (environment, border crossings, safety) or present documents (registration, title etc.). Once our passport was fully stamped we could then proceed to have our press vehicle inspected. However, Raff and the techs would have to install a special GPS device, referred to as the &#8220;Trippy&#8221;, that would allow us to follow the race assistance route. There would be no way they&#8217;d be able to install this until the Desert Warrior was ready for its inspection.</p>
    <p>Meanwhile, Rally Raid techs strongly suggested we get aluminum plates that would serve as a base in sand or on rough terrain for the Desert Warriors built in hydraulic lift&#8212;a tough call at 2pm on a holiday weekend. But Dario set off hoping to have these fabricated to match Rally Raid specs.</p>
    <p>After more than 4 hours the Desert Warrior was lowered back to earth and tested&#8212;but the clutch was slipping. Raff and the team reasoned that there might&#8217;ve been some fluid on the clutch, plus because it was new it needed to heat up to temperature, but the short test drive wasn&#8217;t enough. There was plenty of grab at low RPMs but high a bit of slip. This we&#8217;d have to wait and see. With more than a million people flocking to Mar del Plata for the new year and The Dakar, the streets were choked with traffic and pedestrians spilled off the sidewalks on to the streets.</p>
    <p>With the sun dropping fast and a long to do list for all three vehicles, and with everyone operating on about 4 hours of sleep and barely any lunch, the team finally got its first break and gathered for dinner, where Dario showed up with the cylinder disk plates &#8212; made better than the Rally Raid originals. The techs then returned to the bivouac and worked until about 1am. All necessary because the car would have to pass inspection the tomorrow, Friday the 30th of December at 4pm.</p>
    <p>&nbsp;</p>
    <p style="text-align: center;"><em><strong>Click photos to see full wide versions and navigate through easily:</strong></em></p>
    <style type='text/css'>
    #gallery-1 {
    margin: auto;
    }
    #gallery-1 .gallery-item {
    float: left;
    margin-top: 10px;
    text-align: center;
    width: 33%; }
    #gallery-1 img {
    border: 2px solid #cfcfcf;
    }
    #gallery-1 .gallery-caption {
    margin-left: 0;
    }
    </style>
    <p> <!-- see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php --></p>
    <div id='gallery-1' class='gallery galleryid-2343'>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0617.jpg' title='IMG_0617' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0617.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Face tell all. Too early. Robb, Tara and Ben wait for our taxi to RV company." title="IMG_0617" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Face tell all. Too early. Robb, Tara and Ben wait for our taxi to RV company.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0622.jpg' title='IMG_0622' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0622.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Not the RV Tara was hoping for!" title="IMG_0622" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Not the RV Tara was hoping for!
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0624.jpg' title='IMG_0624' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0624.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="RV company HQ just 45 minutes outside of Buenos Aires" title="IMG_0624" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    RV company HQ just 45 minutes outside of Buenos Aires
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0633.jpg' title='IMG_0633' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0633.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Tara not happy about the accomodations." title="IMG_0633" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Tara not happy about the accomodations.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0636.jpg' title='IMG_0636' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0636.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Everyone wishes Robb and team good luck at Dakar" title="IMG_0636" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Everyone wishes Robb and team good luck at Dakar
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0637.jpg' title='IMG_0637' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0637.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Multa. Multa. Multa. We're not the only ones getting Police shakedown" title="IMG_0637" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Multa. Multa. Multa. We&#8217;re not the only ones getting Police shakedown
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0663.jpg' title='IMG_0663' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0663.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Scavenger hunt for press credentials. The techs and driver/codriver will do this tomorrow." title="IMG_0663" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Scavenger hunt for press credentials. The techs and driver/codriver will do this tomorrow.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0667.jpg' title='IMG_0667' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0667.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Inside registration tent." title="IMG_0667" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Inside registration tent.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0668.jpg' title='IMG_0668' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_0668.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Dinner with team, Dario gives thumbs up because Robb is happy with newly manufactured cylinders for hydraulic lifts on the Desert Warrior" title="IMG_0668" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Dinner with team, Dario gives thumbs up because Robb is happy with newly manufactured cylinders for hydraulic lifts on the Desert Warrior
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5462.jpg' title='IMG_5462' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5462.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Almost finished. Desert Warrior gets a new clutch and adjustments to cylinders." title="IMG_5462" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Almost finished. Desert Warrior gets a new clutch and adjustments to cylinders.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5471.jpg' title='IMG_5471' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5471.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Master Tech Bill Young keeps tools in order." title="IMG_5471" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Master Tech Bill Young keeps tools in order.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5474.jpg' title='IMG_5474' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5474.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Robb expresses some tension as another driver, David, discusses particulars and suggestions." title="IMG_5474" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Robb expresses some tension as another driver, David, discusses particulars and suggestions.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5479.jpg' title='IMG_5479' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5479.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Test Driving Desert Warrior in the Madness of the Bivouac" title="IMG_5479" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Test Driving Desert Warrior in the Madness of the Bivouac
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5481.jpg' title='IMG_5481' rel="lightbox[2343-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/IMG_5481.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="Paul Round of Rally Raid UK, a 14 Dakar Rally Veteran." title="IMG_5481" /></a>
    </dt>
    <dd class='gallery-caption'>
    Paul Round of Rally Raid UK, a 14 Dakar Rally Veteran.
    </dd>
    </dl>
    <p> <br style='clear: both;' />
    </div>
  18. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    Registration & Inspection: The Dakar 2012 Edition

    <img src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0740.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="" border="" align="" />

    When the Russian driver was informed he owed more than 100,000 Euros in order to complete his registration in the 2012 Edition of the infamous Dakar rally, I was again reminded that this is big business. Beyond the cost of registration, considerations include cost of the race vehicle, support personal and their vehicles, shipping of all the vehicles to South America and airfare for all those on the team.</p>
    <p>In December of 2007, just days before the start of the 2008 Rally, the Dakar organization cancelled the legendary rally for safety considerations. Brutal executions in Mauritania claimed by Al Queda sealed the casket for any future African Dakar Rally. It&#8217;s South America&#8217;s rally today.</p>
    <p><span class="pullquote3 quotes alignleft">It would be impossible to get a new regulation suit in time for the race start, so inspectors took a flame to the thread used on the embroidery to see if it would burn.</span><br />
    Even as press covering the event, Tara and I needed to take our 2008 Ford Ranger with the camper home sitting in the bed through the Dakar safety inspection. We fitted the car with an emergency survival kit, two spare tires, reflective vests, fire extinguisher, a tool to break the windshield and cut the seat belts and more. Our vehicles was then officially designated as a Dakar vehicle, complete with the stickers of the rally and its sponsors. Our vehicle was designated to travel along the assistance route. Some other press had additional safety equipment and more rigorous inspection requirements, including roll cages and approved clothing.</p>
    <p>For Robb and Ben, the set back with the clutch was followed by the need to put the Desert Warrior through a rigorous punch list to ensure all loose ends and safety issues were addressed prior to scrutinizing/inspection. LIke our press registration, both Robb, Ben and the Desert Warrior and Bill and Raff and the T5 support vehicle had to go through registration and then inspection.</p>
    <p>While our Ford Ranger was fitted with the &#8220;Trippy&#8221; GPS unit, the Desert Warrior required a special tracking device and lockable GPS unit called an Iritrack. This not only receives GPS satellite signals, it can transmit location information to the Dakar organization. It&#8217;s also what allows us to follow in near real time vehicle position &#8212; like on the Darkcydrallyracing.com website.</p>
    <p>The Desert Warrior had been fitted with new Iritrack device for the Baja 500 race, one that include more powerful antenna and reception. While it had been approved for an inside windshield install for Baja, the Dakar organization and the Iritrack support personnel on location forced Darkcyd Racing to drill a hole in the roof of the Desert Warrior and fit the antenna to the roof above the co-driver cockpit seat. This pushed the techs and the time allotted to complete the inspection.</p>
    <p>It took more than an hour to secure appropriate connectors, cable and to attach the antenna, so it was nearly 6:30 by the time the Desert Warrior rolled into the Dakar inspection intent. Here the car was decorated with the appropriate stickers while inspectors scrutinized the car, even putting it up on a lift for a closer look. That&#8217;s where inspectors discovered that the there was no hole in a bolt on the turbo so they could seal it with a tag&#8212;kinda like the electric company does with a meter. But between Raff and Bill and the techs at Rally Raid UK, they drilled a hole while the inspectors completed the inspection and who eventually tagged and sealed the turbo. This would ensure that no changes or work could be done on the turbo during the race. The tag will be removed at the end of the race.</p>
    <p>It&#8217;s here where the driver and co-driver clothing and safety devices are checked. Both Ben and Robb were fitted with custom made Sparco full body flame retardant racing suits. Sparco is the defacto standard racing suit used by top drivers in nearly every race circuit worldwide. Darkcyd Racing had ordered the suits with custom embroidered names just above the left breast. However Sparco had embroidered through three layers of fabric through to the inside lining. Dakar organization scolded the Darkcyd Team and informed them that the rules and regulations clearly state that nothing may penetrate the inside liner layer of racing suits. They even pointed out that Sparco&#8217;s logo and graphics didn&#8217;t penetrate the layer. Robb and Ben were befuddled as to why and how Sparco could let such an oversight passed quality control.</p>
    <p>It would be impossible to get a new regulation suit in time for the race start, so inspectors took a flame to the thread used on the embroidery to see if it would burn. Alas, at least the thread was fireproof and the inspectors let the suits pass.</p>
    <p>Meanwhile thousands of locals crammed the grassy area in front of the Argentinian Naval Base in Mar del Plata and waited patiently for each car to complete its inspection and ride up on ramp in front of a massive video display while local news media interviewed each driver. Robb and Ben jumped out of the car and handed out Darkcyd Racing stickers to eager and happy fans looking to connect with the racers.</p>
    <p><strong>Robb and Ben were now officially in the race.</strong></p>
    <p>&nbsp;</p>
    <style type='text/css'>
    #gallery-1 {
    margin: auto;
    }
    #gallery-1 .gallery-item {
    float: left;
    margin-top: 10px;
    text-align: center;
    width: 33%; }
    #gallery-1 img {
    border: 2px solid #cfcfcf;
    }
    #gallery-1 .gallery-caption {
    margin-left: 0;
    }
    </style>
    <p> <!-- see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php --></p>
    <div id='gallery-1' class='gallery galleryid-2376'>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/DAS_2135.jpg' title='DAS_2135' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/DAS_2135.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="DAS_2135" title="DAS_2135" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0711.jpg' title='IMG_0711' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0711.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_0711" title="IMG_0711" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0718.jpg' title='IMG_0718' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0718.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_0718" title="IMG_0718" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0740.jpg' title='IMG_0740' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0740.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_0740" title="IMG_0740" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0766.jpg' title='IMG_0766' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_0766.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_0766" title="IMG_0766" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5501-Version-2.jpg' title='IMG_5501 - Version 2' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5501-Version-2.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5501 - Version 2" title="IMG_5501 - Version 2" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5530.jpg' title='IMG_5530' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5530.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5530" title="IMG_5530" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5560.jpg' title='IMG_5560' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5560.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5560" title="IMG_5560" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5585.jpg' title='IMG_5585' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5585.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5585" title="IMG_5585" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5611.jpg' title='IMG_5611' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5611.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5611" title="IMG_5611" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5634.jpg' title='IMG_5634' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5634.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5634" title="IMG_5634" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5652.jpg' title='IMG_5652' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5652.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5652" title="IMG_5652" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <p><br style="clear: both" />
    <dl class='gallery-item'>
    <dt class='gallery-icon'>
    <a href='http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5683.jpg' title='IMG_5683' rel="lightbox[2376-1]"><img width="" height="" src="http://www.darkcydrallyracing.com/rally-team-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/IMG_5683.jpg" class="attachment-thumbnail" alt="IMG_5683" title="IMG_5683" /></a>
    </dt>
    </dl>
    <p> <br style='clear: both;' />
  19. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,246
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    That's about right! It's an amazing journey and as you'll read over the next few days, even those who are not racing are subject to the pace, madness and endurance test that only those who truly endure first hand, can truly understand the scope of such an endeavor!

    Stay tuned my friend!
  20. KTM265

    KTM265 Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,043
    Location:
    Iowa

    I will my friend... One day I hope you publish a full book on your adventures. You are living the dream...