260 off road miles over two days and a great result with 16th place.
I'm hoping that will translate as a 15th place in the Big Bike Rally Challenge as winner of the Rally 1 class (single cylinder over 575cc) Lyndon Poskitt was riding a 450cc bike. OK it was a full blown KTM factory replica that he will be campaigning in next year's Dakar Rally so no real advantage that might be expected from a "smaller" bike (because physically it isn't) and we all know Lyndon could most probably beat the rest of us whatever bike he rode. He did last year riding a KTM 950 Adventure that he rode to most events.
The course was fairly straightforward with a lot of gravel fire roads that meant high speeds but as a result also some spectacular crashes and several mechanical failures.
I wasn't immune from the breakdowns with two exhaust bolts falling out of the cylinder head causing me to have possibly the loudest bike on the track! You can see where the bolt has fallen out below...
At one point the exhaust pulled out of the head altogether but was jammed in place by the retaining spring, this led to me to having to bash it back in with a rock as it was far too hot to grab hold of. I was able to stop it falling out again with some bailing wire.
Here's a few more photo's
The "Guernsey Boys" who had a pretty bad weekend with Ryan and Ray both going out with injury on Saturday and then Phil's bike refused to start for the last lap on Sunday leading to DNF's all round.
The Mad Cow Racing "Pit" exhaust still in place at this stage!
Moly and Burt's immaculately turned out Husky 630s, unfortunately Burts bike broke down on Sunday leading to a DNF and although Moly managed to take 7th place overall, he did so with a broken hand (the reason? note the lack of handguards on bike No 1)
You may recall I rescued my friend Michael after he submerged his KTM 690 in the river at last year's Cambrian Rally, well this is it's replacement, a 990 Adventure R. Michael was going fairly well until he had a mishap....
An overtaking rider threw up a rock that hit him in the face, he received treatment from the on-site medics (above) but ended up in A&E at Hexham Hospital on Saturday afternoon. Despite this he raced again on Sunday but as he had only completed three of the four laps was classed as a DNF.
I didn't escape entirely unscathed as at one point I managed to stop only to find a hole where I put my foot down, so fell over breaking the end of my clutch lever. Another low speed "off" resulted in me melting a hole in my new Scott trousers. But I saved my most spectacular stunt for Sunday, when having successfully negotiated a very tricky, muddy descent we christened the "Hill of Doom" I managed to stall on the small bank up at the bottom. Cue bike staying where it was and I exited left...
Head first straight into a four foot deep drainage ditch! To say I was soaked through was the understatement of the race. A lap and a half later and I was still dripping wet...
The things we do for "fun" eh?