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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 09, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Stats from Leg A, Leg B, and Combined content media
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 09, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
https://ldxrally.link/2022LDXPhotos
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 08, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Well, the inaugural LDX rally is in the books now. Things went well, we think. Lots of fun was had - riders were in good spirits throughout. If there was much rider angst related to the rally in the field, we sure didn't hear it. Couple minor things - riders not able to find a bonus, or app issues. They were always resolved pretty quickly with minimal to no delay. There was a little angst over mechanical and other issues, of course. But those were the ancillary things riders need to be able to handle. As rallymasters do, there were a few surprises up Paul's sleeve for the riders. The rally was designed purposely for exactly 7 days. Noon to noon Cheyenne time. This allowed us to award riders who did at least 7,000 miles a special IBA SS7K certificate. Sticking with the theme, this was displayed in Roman Numerals on the certificate. Eighteen riders did more than 7,000 miles, but only 17 got the certificate because you can't switch bikes on a cert ride. John Anderson's 7,834 miles spanned 2 bikes. Kerri Miller was the only rider of the top 14 to not ride more than 7,000 miles with 6,809 miles. Boy was she close! And efficient! Speaking of Roman Numerals and sticking to the theme, LDX riders will be awarded a special number in conjunction with their place in the event. Because there were three 2-up teams, their number won't match their place after 21st where Mark and Michelle Rotert finished. The pillion will receive the next number after the rider. In other words, Billy Connacher is I, James Owen is II, Dan Roth is X, Ricardo Machado XX, Mark Rotert XXI, Michelle Rotert XXII. Then, Danny Dossman who came in 22nd, will be XXIII. And so on to Nick Byrnes who will be rider # XLIV. We've discussed some riders who needed to drop out during the rally for various reasons. We are thrilled to report that everyone is okay, or will be soon. One person we haven't mentioned in the written reports so far is Paul Burns. Paul has been in a few Heart of Texas rallies, including the most recent one in late April this year. Soon after the end of the Heart of Texas rally, he flew to California to pick up a new-to-him motorcycle and ride it home to north Texas. He was slated to be on the start line in Cheyenne with us, presumably on his new ride. Tragically, Paul was involved in an accident a few miles from his home on the way back from California and did not survive his injuries. We are devastated to lose a friend. We are all poorer for not having him part of our events any longer, whether as a rider, observer, helper, etc. We'll always remember you, Paul. Reminder that the LDX will run on even years, so the next one is in 2024. Also a reminder that the "X" is a variable. Seven days seems like a good number, but it could be more or less based on the specifics of the event and the whims of the rallymaster. Registration timing and process will be similar to how it was done in 2022. So if you want to throw your hat in, keep your eyes open and get on it before we fill up. You've seen the standings and know who won, who was in the top 10, etc. So let's discuss some details of options and who chose what. Emphasis on the second leg since that's where the action is. As advertised, the top 10 placing riders would be granted a no-draw entry to the 2023 Iron Butt Rally. It was not necessary this time, every single one of them was already in the rally! A couple IBR rookies in there, but they've proven they can hang for 7 days, what's another 4? Those who have lived through the 11-day Iron Butt Rally understand how funny that is. Oh, yes, and everyone must cheer for IBR rookie and LDX staff member Jeff Konecik next June/July. Jeff contributes more than most folks recognize and has been an amazing asset to this organization. Thank you Jeff, we will for sure be supporting you fully in 23. Obviously, the rallymaster did a good job distributing bonuses and assigning point values because of the diverse routes riders selected. It's always interesting to see what they pick over what we thought was a good (the best?) choice. For the second leg, not a single rider did what we thought could likely be the winner's route. More on that in a bit. We looked at the first leg as kind of a tie breaker for the second. In other words, the points were much higher on the second leg. So the second leg (in a 2 leg event) is where the event is truly won. But you need to have done well on the first leg as well. Billy, who dominated the field with nearly 38K points ahead of 2nd place, was in 4th place at the checkpint, nearly 7K points behind the leader, James Owen. So Billy actually outrode James by almost 45K points on the second leg. Impressive. This pattern of increasing point potential is typical in endurance rallies. Endurance is an important skill for this game. Riders need to manage themselves appropriately so that they can maintain the brain power to continue performing routine tasks correctly later in the game. Proper management of your basic needs is critical. And harder than it sounds. We dealt with a very frustrated rider who was trying to fix his sleep bonus after forgetting to 'end' it in the app. No problem, if there's any electronic shenanigans with time calculations, we can just use your receipt times. Uh oh, forgot to get those as well. Another rider transposed numbers in his head and miscalculated a meal bonus, ending and submitting it too soon, thereby not getting the multiplier on his sleep points. It's really easy to do. Especially later in the rally. For the first leg, or Leg A as it was officially known, there was a set start time. Riders were released by Jeff Konicek at noon on Saturday, June 25th from the Red Lion, Cheyenne parking lot. The checkpoint would be in State College PA on the afternoon/evening of June 28th. The following morning, June 29th, riders would be given the rally book for the next leg and leave whenever they were ready. They could take 5 minutes or 5 hours to plan. Leg A offered riders several combo bonus opportunities as well as George Washington "multipliers". Riders could add points to non-Washington physical bonuses by successfully gathering Washington bonuses with non-Washington bonuses in between. This was explained in one of the earlier reports. While the bump was nice, it probably wasn't worth too much sacrifice of other strategies to build on the Washington additive points. There were some attractive combos on this leg. The most popular was the Sports Figures combo - gather all 3 for an additional 12K points. Not bad at all. About 1/3 of the field went for this. Another popular combo, that about 1/4 of the field went for, was to successfully bag all 3 Goethe and Schiller bonuses. They were located in Milwaukee, Cleveland and Syracuse. Riders absolutely loved the opportunity to get off their bikes and hoof it up the steps to the statue in Syracuse. The text messages and phone calls to scoring expressing their gratitude were plentiful. The most appealing combo from a points perspective was a Civil Rights opportunity for 16K points if you could successfully claim all 6 civil rights offerings. Not a single rider obtained this. Rider James Epley was the only one to get the Fred Lee Sr bonus in Tallahassee. But he didn't obtain the rest of the bonuses in that combo. Several riders did get other combos, they definitely played a role in gathering points on the first leg. At the end of leg A, James Owen was in the lead by less than 700 points over Steve Gallant. Ken Aman was right behind them in 3rd. Unfortunately, Ken would have to drop out to get his FJR's rear subframe repaired. Sorry to hear that Ken; one of the scorers had the same issue several years ago and definitely empathizes. Riders were told they should have 32,000 points at a minimum to be on finisher pace in the first leg. James Owen had 89,886 points. The last place rider who was still in it had 32,691. Going back to something we said a couple paragraphs ago, we saw the first leg as a tiebreaker. Given how tight the top riders were, we knew anyone in the top 20 at the end of Leg A could wind up with a top 10 finish after Leg B. Oh, have we mentioned that because of the way the scoring is done, we can see what everyone's score is in real time. Now, you have to look at these numbers with the knowledge that things can change very quickly when someone takes a sleep/meal bonus or completes a combo among other things. We're so invested in what the riders are doing that we often know, or can check really quickly to see if someone already took the sleep bonus or is about to complete a combo. Don't bother asking us, we won't tell you any of this during the rally. Riders would call and ask their scorer how many Lincolns they had. Of course we can't tell them this, we can only send them the current list of claimed bonuses. They can count themselves. As we've said in prior reports, we will lead the rider to the answer, but the rider must find it on their own. If the rider realizes a mistake was made, it can be resubmitted in coordination with their scorer. But they need to recognize the error, not be told by scoring during the event. For the second leg, or Leg B as it was officially known, the most popular bonus was the infamous Lincoln statue in Gettysburg. Thirty-seven riders went there. This is where "Pennsylvania Karen" caused so many phone calls to scoring. In case you missed that report, the statue had been removed for renovation, but as luck would have it, was in the process of being returned on the day the vast majority of that 37 showed up. As Karens will do, she would have no part of anyone having a bit of a good time on her watch. We worked with everyone who called in to make sure they were awarded the points and no one was worse for the wear. A handful of riders went there later and were blissfully unaware of all the drama the earlier riders experienced. Ten riders braved the ferry to Mackinac Island to collect the Father Marquette bonus on the island. There were 3 total statues of Father Marquette in the rally, and if a rider successfully bagged all of them an additional 30,000 points would be awarded. All but one of them went for the combo. The highest placing finisher of that group was Michael Best (3rd). The complete badass John Anderson missed this combo, still pulling out a 7th place finish. Reminder that John had a mechanical failure on his GoldWing and bought a used Suzuki Boulevard 800 during the second leg to finish the event. He needed to repair the clutch on his new ride not long after buying it and wound up dropping a good portion of his route, including the Marquette statue in Gary, IN. Gary's loss to not have John grace them with his presence. The third statue was in Marquette located in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. John was in first place up until his mechanical failure. He remained in first for a good while after as well. But having to drop so much of his route while the competition was steady collecting points didn't allow him to maintain it. Keep your eyes on John for future events, he's a very skilled rallier. Eight riders visited Vardry McBee in Greenville, SC., including Billy Connacher, the winner. Paul Tong saw this statue during the 2019 Iron Butt Rally and got him thinking about founders of things and off he went creating this puzzle. It's only fitting that LDX rider # I went to the bonus that started it all. Another top 10 rider, Kerry Miller (9th), also went to Greenville. We previously discussed the only (officially) manned bonus, Senator Hoar in Worcester, MA during the second leg. Three of the top 10 riders went there. James Owen (2nd), Mike Best (3rd), and John Anderson (7th). Two-up phenom Jon and Caleigh Kerr and Paul Partin also attended. BPR12, a Lincoln statue in Pontiac, IL, was "manned" by IBR finisher Rick Martin for a while. Rick scouted that one for us as well. Thanks for the fun pictures and a little fun for the riders, Rick. Fourteen riders went to Pontiac, Rick visited with most of them. Other combos on this leg were obtaining two Martin Luther King, Jr statues in Omaha and Cheyenne. This was the most popular combo on Leg B for 4,000 points, successfully gathered by 13 finishers. Successfully claiming Abraham Lincoln bonuses was key on this leg. IF a rider successfully claimed 15 of them, an additional 20,000 points would be awarded. Four riders did this successfully, including 1st and 3rd place finishers. Four of the top 10 finishers had NO combos awarded. We suspect if they had, the standings might have looked a little different. Now, there were 13 Captain John Mullan bonuses available along the Mullan Trail through Montana and Idaho. In the 1850's Captain Mullan was part of the Northern Pacific Railroad Survey. He discovered the Mullan Pass and led the construction crew which built the Mullan Road in Montana, Idaho and Washington state. If a rider successfully collected all of these statues, an additional 30,000 points would be awarded. Not a single rider collected a single John Mullan bonus. We thought a rider could scarf up as many Lincoln multipliers as possible, then hit all the Mullan bonuses for a 520 mile huge gathering. Depending how many Lincoln multipliers the rider had, this could garner a lot of points. The combo was worth 30,000. The straight point value on the Mullans was 7,632. Plus there was a Lincoln in Spokane at the end of the trail and then the rider could zip down to Gerlach to visit Fran Crane and back to Cheyenne. It's ambitious for sure. But as riders will do, they found a better way than we did. We sincerely hope you've enjoyed following along with the inaugural LDX rally. It was fun to create, fun to work, and most importantly, the riders seem to have enjoyed it. None of this is worth doing without riders who want to come play. Since we have been the beneficiary of others doing the hard work, we don't mind the work to create and run rallies at all. Thank you to the riders who come out and give us something to do. We look forward to next time and watching another fun event unfold. Note from the Rallymaster: As was written above, the idea for Founding Fathers came to me prior to the Iron Rally Start in Greeneville, SC in 2019. Nancy Oswald convinced me to join her quest in search of the world’s best 20oz latte and we went to downtown Greenville in search of it. There I noticed the statue of Vardry McBee, the founder of Greenville, SC, and thus formed the idea for gather founding fathers statues for my rally idea. Although I did not pick the same bonuses as I felt the winner had, but did note two main things: Leg A- It was not worth grabbing George Washington bonuses on Leg A to gain all the other boniil. That was a red herring. The true goal in leg A was to get as many high value bonuses as possible. Leg B-The leg was all about the multiplier. One should contantly be seeking a Lincoln multiplier and then a non-Lincoln to get that mutipler. Try to get as many Linoclns as posslbe Those who did well on the first leg figured this out. Those top ten finishers probably figured it out early on. More to come…
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 06, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
More rally photos content media
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 04, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Leg 1 : https://new.spotwalla.com/animation/7760-59330-d667/view?speed=80 Leg 2 : https://new.spotwalla.com/animation/3e31-17d4a-954b/view?speed=80 Combined : https://new.spotwalla.com/animation/9d7b-1109e-ebb5/view?speed=80
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 03, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
PDF Attached with results
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 02, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Today is the day. Riders return to the Red Lion in Cheyenne. Penalties start at 11:30AM. Time barred at noon. Speaking of time barred…. Did everyone like our song? We have tried to keep reports consistent in terms of tense – as if the whole thing were written in one sitting. In reality, it’s worked on throughout each day as time allows and things worth reporting happen. Please understand this as you read today in case it seems like we’re jumping around. It seems that way because we are. Today is busier and more disjointed than previous days, so please be patient with us. All finishers made it to the Red Lion before penalties started. James Owen, as usual, really pushed the envelope to the very end with only 50 seconds to spare, grabbing one last bonus here in Cheyenne before coming in. He called scoring to double check how penalties worked and correctly calculated that even if grabbing the MLK bonus in town made him 2 or 3 minutes late, it was well worth it. Very impressive, James. We had some late withdrawals yesterday and today. Eric Markus who is well-known to us from The Heart of Texas had a very unfortunate incident between Lincoln and Omaha. Seems a car in left lane decided the fact that Eric was in the right lane was not sufficient reason to not zip over to try and catch the exit. Eric is okay, his bike not so much. We are heartbroken that Eric’s bike is toast, but very glad that Eric is not. He has a little road rash on his tushy, but otherwise unscathed. Maybe he’ll be a little sore tomorrow, but Eric is also a badass and will bounce right back. We sincerely hope he can make it to Cheyenne for dinner with us tonight. And that Eric will join us for future events. He’s a very welcome addition. Rider Craig Phillips had an issue with his rear wheel and had to drop out to address it. This is a perfect example of a picture being worth 1,000 words. We got a phone call about 6AM Saturday morning from a paramedic in Moab that Crystal Sabas was involved in a single-vehicle accident. She was taken to the hospital for evaluation; we believe she’ll make a full recovery. We hate to have anyone end their rally like that in the last hours of the event. Crystal had family here in Cheyenne to celebrate her finish. Instead of that, they’ll make their way to the hospital to be with her. It must be very disappointing for all, but the good news is that her family could get to her relatively quickly. Great riding, Crystal. We wish you a complete and speedy recovery and we see you down the road soon. Cory Ure got caught up in a bad thunderstorm 534 miles from Cheyenne and made the smart choice of staying safe and living to ride another day. He just didn’t have time to get back to Cheyenne without being time barred. We are disappointed as well, Cory. But hope you join us for dinner and that we see you again at another event soon. It’s nerve-racking in the scoring room. We sit here watching dots just like you do. We have a slight advantage with level of detail, but honestly, we aren’t sure if that’s better. We want everyone to finish and finish the best they can. When we see someone looking like they are close to getting into penalties, we feel for them. We root for them. We hope they don’t need gas. Remember that penalties are a little brutal here if it gets much past 10 minutes. At 10 minutes, a rider is looking at 1,024 points deducted. By 20 minutes, it’s over a million. No one is even close to having a million points, so it’d be bad. Riders must have accumulated a minimum on 100,000 points to be a finisher in this event. That includes both legs. Every rider that arrived prior to time barring accomplished that goal. Some by a little, some by a lot. You’ll just have to wait and see who did exactly what. More entertainment from the riders follows. It is truly joyful when riders send us fun photos. We think it’s almost as much fun for them as it is for us. Caleigh Kerr is still gettin’ cozy with statues. Always interesting to see what she’s gotten up to next when rider 8 pops up on the list of bonuses to review. If there were an award for most fun on a rally, we know who would get it. That’ll go on the idea list to be further considered. We are beginning to get concerned that Caleigh is going to look for payment. She’s been a prolific contributor to the photographs you see in the daily reports. She sent this beauty in this morning at about 6:30. There was an amazing rainbow here at the Red Lion last night as well. Tobie got a picture we’ll eventually share. Apologies for being a little deficient in this area, we’re busy with riders and rally stuff. As Caleigh said when she sent this picture in, “Totally radical and magical!!” Yes, rallies give the rider those indescribable moments. You had to be there to understand. When they happen, it makes all the rest of it worthwhile. We are so happy that Caleigh is having these moments now and hope she has many more in the future. Evidently, Caleigh ran out of weird things to do with statues so decided on a cartwheel. Maybe Jon told her about Nancy’s infamous Jake Blues cartwheel entrance at Holy Rollin’ and she was trying to show Nancy up. We’re not sure. Whatever the case, we got a good chuckle out of this. Ben Ernst has also been a substantial field photographer for us. He found John Anderson on the road and sent this beautiful shot in for us. It looks cold, doesn’t it? Maybe it was, but at least they could hold each other to stay warm. After this, the guys decided to ride together into the finish and channeled their inner Caleigh holding each other’s flags in silly ways for their submissions. Thanks for the smiles, guys. We wish there weren’t so much attrition. It’s just a bummer to have so many great folks need to drop out. But we still have 41 finishers and we’re thrilled with that. Several of the folks who were unable to finish for whatever reason have still made their way to Cheyenne to be among their people. Lots of new stories from the road to be shared, lessons learned, bikes broken, maybe a few bones as well. But everyone is accounted for and safe. This is truly all that matters. We sure do have a great deal of fun, but there is a price. This is why we require the enhanced insurance and helmets. It is why we preach ATGATT (All The Gear All The Time). It is why we monitor their speed and penalize them when find they’ve been exceeding the posted speed limit. All that said, we greatly appreciate the riders coming out to enjoy our event. The work is meaningless if there are no riders to come enjoy it. We thank you, riders. One and all. Did we mention that apart from bragging rights, the top 10 finishers in the 2022 LDX Rally receive a no-draw entry to the 2023 Iron Butt Rally. Are any of them already in? Maybe. Maybe not. Are any of them LD rookies? Maybe. Maybe not. IBR rookies? You’re just going to have to wait to find out. Dinner and awards start at 7PM this evening. We’ll get the standings posted at some point after the conclusion of the presentation. No promises it will be this evening. Thank you for following along with us. You are also important because there’s no point in writing if there’s no one to read it. We hope you’ve enjoyed the reports.
LDX Rally: Clock's Stopped and Riders are In content media
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 02, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Today, we’d like to share a little parody on Pink Floyd’s “Time” that we are calling “Time (barred)”: Ticking away the moments that lead up to start time Fritter and waste the last few moments away Kicking around a parking lot far from your hometown Waiting for someone to let you be well on your way Tired of baking in the sunshine, riding through hours of rain You are youngish and the road is long, and there’s still time to ride today And then one day you find ten bonuses have got behind you Garmin didn’t tell you when to turn, you missed the highway exit And you run, and you run to get in the museum but it's closing Racing around a parking garage looking for a place to park The rally pack is the same in a relative way but you're older Shorter of breath and one day closer to a trike Every rallybook is getting thicker, Basecamp doesn’t show the way Plans that either come to naught or half a page of scribbled lines Hanging on in sweaty desperation is the LD Rider way The time is gone, the penalty window starts, thought I'd something more to get Home, home again I like to ride when I can And when I come home cold and tired It's good to warm my bones beside the fire Far away across the road The sound of the shifting gears Calls the faithful to their RDLs To hear the softly spoken GPS cue. We hope everyone enjoys our fun little song. Inspiration struck, and there it is. Rider Paul Meyer stopped at his home in Kansas yesterday. The grandkids, Anna and Gracie, were there so it was a terrific visit. The obligatory flag photo with Anna, who is known to us from Paul’s adventures with “Flat Anna” during one of the recent Heart of Texas rallies, is adorable. She’s a well-traveled kid, even if in spirit with her favorite grandfather. We’ll save a place for Anna and Gracie on the starting line in about 10 years. Hopefully, Grampa will invest in some better footwear by then.😊 Dave Gillihan, who is a very welcome presence in our events, contacted us with a very bizarre story to tell. He was approaching a bonus in Lexington, MO when a car tire came rolling out of nowhere and actually struck him! We found the non-emergency number for the local police and asked him to report it. While we have no way to know who is planning to do what bonuses, there are riders who conceivably could head to Lexington. We are hoping that the police can figure out what happened. There was a general store right nearby and Dave said the locals thought it might be mischievous kids doing what mischievous kids do. We haven’t heard any other reports – hoping that pattern continues. At this point, there aren’t many folks still far enough east, so fingers crossed, there are no more incidents. Dave was able to stay upright and while there’s a little damage to his bike, he seems to be rolling along just fine. Good thing he’s so tough and able to shake it off, move on. Patrick Nijsters ain’t messing around with his meal breaks. This is exactly what we want riders to do. Look at this delicious meal he sourced in Colorado Springs on Friday. The bike issues continue for our riders unfortunately. The latest victim is John Anderson. Honda is getting a bad rep here. He had to just buy a used bike to be able to continue. This ought to be good. We’ve mentioned before how John just rolls with stuff. He has got to be disappointed, especially given how well he was doing. But he just puts on his big girl panties, finds a solution and gets to it. If he has said a disparaging word, we sure didn’t hear it. You truly are an example to follow, John. A little while after John took off on his new rally ride, he realized he got an extra special deal on this bike – for no extra charge, he got a slippery clutch! And apparently, there’s a story about his ferry ride to Mackinac Island. Can’t wait to see him and hear the tale. Roadside tinkering. Yay! Non-rally rally bike! Phone, GPS, and Spot all mounted up Sadly, rider Paul Partin decided to drop out of the rally. He just realized he was a little further out than he wanted to be at this point and decided to just call it a rally and head to his own barn. That’s okay Paul, we totally get it and hope to see you again at a future event. Or just to collect the stuff you left in Cheyenne. 😊 We are coming down to the short rows on the inaugural LDX. As we write just after 4:30 PM in Cheyenne, riders have less than 19 hours before penalties start. Remember, we penalize exponentially. A couple minutes isn’t bad, but much more than that starts to hurt more than a speeding penalty. We’ve already discussed that Abraham Lincoln statues are incredibly valuable on this leg. They act as multipliers for subsequent bonuses. The special bonus on this leg is in honor of Fran Crane. Since there is no statue of Fran, we chose to use the stone outside Gerlach, NV in the IBA Memorial as the bonus. Riders will need to travel to Guru Lane and locate Frane’s stone. This is an anytime bonus, but boy is it dark up there at night. There aren’t many lights in Gerlach and they sure don’t offer any illumination at the memorial several miles from town. It’s a dirt road up there. It’s usually not in terrible shape, but there can be some holes or large rocks that might cause a little issue for a rider not paying close attention. Of course, we can’t say for sure who is doing what, but it currently appears there are 3 folks heading there. They should have enough time to get there, get the bonus and get back to Cheyenne. It is 1000 miles from Gerlach to Cheyenne. Google maps says 14.5 hours. That’s a lot of ground to cover with maybe one or two bonuses to get in between. But Fran is worth 12,000 points. If you have Lincolns enough for an 8- or 9-times multiplier, that’s pretty attractive. Is it attractive enough for you to devote over 24 hours to nothing else? Time will tell. Oh, you don’t know who Frane Crane is? Well, she is a legend in the Iron Butt community. She rode her motorcycles over a million miles, was a multiple Iron Butt Rally finisher, and was a Guinness World Record holder. She was recognized in the Women in Motorcycling exhibit at the AMA Motorcycle Heritage Museum in 1990. During the Iron Butt Rally in 1999, Fran was involved in an accident and taken to the hospital with a concussion. She was mistakenly administered a drug that ended her life. It is a terrible tragedy, and we are all poorer for her death. There were several combination bonuses available on this leg. To be awarded the points, riders need to successfully claim/receive all items in the combo. There’s a Martin Luther King combo, fifteen Lincolns combo, Captain John Mullen combo (as of this writing, not a single one of the John Mullen statues has been visited), Father Marquette combo, Albert Einstein combo, and Madonnas of the Trail combo. The Madonnas are neat. They are identical in size and shape but are made from various materials. They were dedicated to the spirit of the pioneer women in the United States whose strength and love were critical in conquering the wilderness and establishing permanent homes. The National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution commissioned the 12 statues, dedicating them in 1928 and 1929. There is one in each of the 12 states along the National Old Trails Road. Riders must collect all 12 to be awarded the combo amount of 30,000 points. The Madonnas themselves have published values of approximately 600 – 1000 points each. But with multipliers gained from Lincoln bonuses, this could be a very attractive thread. We are busy here doing all the things. We’ll try and get something out tomorrow after everyone is in. Dinner will be tomorrow (Saturday) evening with a presentation and results announced after. We hope the riders have enjoyed the puzzle and theme.
Day 7: The Finish Draws Near content media
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jul 02, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
https://new.spotwalla.com/animation/7760-59330-d667/view?speed=80
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Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jun 30, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Ye Olde Bucket o Bolts is still clackety clacketing across I-80. Staff should arrive early afternoon in Cheyenne. Unload, set up the working area and begin preparations for the riders to arrive on Saturday morning. There are other logistics to coordinate tomorrow like returning the RV and collecting staff/guests who are flying into Denver. Followers may have recognized that there is usually a theme to the names assigned on Spotwalla. While a small handful of them might be intentionally named something fitting the theme, more often it’s just that we are rattling off another fitting name and the next rider on the list gets it. When Kerri Miller was Tinkerbell, that was intentional. If you’re REALLY following, you might have also noticed that one rider usually doesn’t fit the theme. There’s a reason for that. We’d love to hear if anyone knows what it is. Maybe not super detailed, but just which one stands out using today’s name. Here’s the rider distribution as of about 5:30 this morning. Here's a pretty sunrise photo from rider Jeff Carroll. Do we want to talk about the app a little more? Sure, okay. There’s an app specifically for this event. Riders select the proper bonus code, take their photo (or load it from their camera roll) and submit. Done. We encourage them to maintain a rider log as well. In fact, if a rider does not maintain a log, he or she cannot argue anything at scoring. The rider must have a completed log to have their query entertained. There are times as we score that things look odd and we might ask for a pic of their log. Some of them say it’s been done with invisible ink, so…. And seriously, that is fine. But then they get what we decide they meant which may or may not match reality. Trust us, we don’t even see point values or take anything like that into consideration. We look at what they submitted and try to see what makes sense. Best we can do. In this rally, order of bonuses is crucial. Remember in the first leg how there were points added based on how many George Washingtons a rider successfully claimed? There was a little more to it, but that’s the gist of it. Well, this leg, it’s Abraham Lincolns. And they are multipliers. The base value for James Owen’s favorite bonus in Worcester, MA is 5,000 points. Depending on how many Lincolns were successfully earned prior to attending, points multiply by 3 or 4. That’s kinda big. The multiplier could have been much higher had that bonus been later in the leg and more Lincolns obtained. Here's a screen shot of the app – the stuff up top is the previous bonus submitted info (so the rider knows it went through). The main body shows the sequence number, bonus code and photo. That was selected from my camera roll. It’s a gift for Carla, the wonder mutt, in case you’re curious. She was present in several of the sample photos. When scouting was done in the car, she usually came along. When the rider is satisfied with the information displayed, hit “submit bonus” and wait for the successful completion message – the info just submitted will populate in that top section of previous bonus submitted. Move on. Here's a snip from the interface – the scorer can see a bunch of pertinent information. Rider number and name, Bonus code, sample photo, link to click and see rider’s submission. We see the date/time it was submitted and if there are any restrictions on availability. There’s also a couple buttons to see the bonus on a map, where the rider submitted from and their full spot track. We see the details of start and stop times on rest and meals. Again, we can approve or deny. If we deny something, we put a reason in the system and the rider will receive a report at scoring showing any denials and the reason. Again, they must have completed their log sheet to contest or question anything at scoring. We want them to use the log, but don’t require it. Scoring goes very quick. Rider Ken Aman called in this morning to advise he busted the rear sub-frame on his FJR. Rather than try and get to the finish and then home, he’s just going to limp home with some help from a ratchet strap. It’s a shame, Ken was sitting in 7th place at the time and definitely on our riders-to-watch list. IBR vet, Rick Martin, lives in Pontiac, IL and has been keeping an eye on the Lincoln bonus in town. We receive a live shot every now and then of someone on site. Here’s rider Mike Lindstrom at BPR12 on site this morning. Thanks for scouting and cheering on our riders, Rick. On this leg, there is a bonus on Mackinac Island, Michigan. To get there, riders must take a passenger ferry from either St. Ignace, as Mark and Michelle Rotert did, or Mackinaw City, as Art Garvin elected to do. It’s a short trip over to motorized vehicle free island. It’s really a neat place that we encourage folks to visit whether part of this rally or some other time off the clock. Since there are no motorized vehicles, goods are moved by horse drawn wagons. Each ferry trip holds items being shipped to the island, when the ferry docks, handlers remove the cargo and load it onto the wagons for local delivery. It might be tourist’s luggage or food/goods being sent to local eateries and shops. The item of interest over there is BMI06 – a statue of Jacques Marquette. There are a total of 3 Marquette statues on this leg. Each is worth some nice points, but to obtain all three successfully is a 30,000 point bump for the rider/2-up team. Here’s Michelle holding the team flag on the island. Good job, Roterts. The Detroit Free Press did an article about how packages are delivered on the Island, photo borrowed from them, and here’s a link to the full story for those who are interested: https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2019/08/13/mackinac-island-amazon-delivery-horse/1997196001/ As we have said many times, we love hearing from the riders. Whatever the reason for the call. Gives us a chance to hear how they are in unspoken words – their tone, demeanor, ability to form a coherent sentence, you know. Nelson Delgado called in with an app question. We quickly got him sorted and he says, “Wanna hear a funny story?” You know it, working on the daily report right now, brother. Well, apparently, Nelson is a smart rider and recognized that he needed some rest last night. So he pulled off and decided a little Iron Butt Motel would do just fine. Finds a little patch of grass and lays his head down. Right in a pile of, um, excrement of unidentified species, domestic pet most likely. Good natured Nelson just marched himself inside and washed his head in the sink. Glad he’s not putting his helmet on the Belsito kids. Important lesson here, do not, I repeat DO NOT, lay your head down anywhere near a “Pet Rest Area”. Further, always watch where you are laying down. Poop, fire ants, sprinkler heads, etc. There are many potential pitfalls at the Iron Butt Motel. More amusement from the riders – as we discussed in a prior report, we do not tolerate speeding. This is a difficult topic and we won’t dwell on it. However, one of the riders who got a penalty just advised staff that the mileage is so much better when you don’t crank the throttle quite so hard. So many good reasons to not speed. From the ignorance is bliss file, James Owen arrived in Gettysburg to find Abe Lincoln right where he should be, no work crews and shooing away of riders. Typical to his style, he’s got a person on the street holding his flag. We knew we should shut up about the weather. No, we aren’t having weather issues, but it appears we have replaced bad weather with bad bikes – aka mechanical failures. Bryan Bailey called in from eastern KY reporting of a possible final drive failure on his GoldWing. In this rally at least, it appears Honda is vying for the title of final drive failure champion. In all seriousness, our hearts break for these riders. They come out and put a lot of effort into competing and having a safe, fun adventure. It’s very upsetting when something you simply can’t control ruins your rally. We are sorry, Bryan and Marissa. We hope there’s a fast easy fix and we see you in Cheyenne on Saturday morning. The Rolling Rally HQ is getting close to Cheyenne, so we’re going to get this posted so we can prepare for the next stage of the never-ending tasks. At least we’ll have a couple more hands from the Cheyenne staff to help with unloading, moving, organizing, setting up, and whatever else we need to do upon arrival. More scoop from us tomorrow.
Day 6: Are we there yet? content media
4
0
520
Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jun 30, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Checkpoint is in the books. Riders were tired, but mostly in good spirits. This is where it becomes evident who understands some of the crucial principles discussed in previous reports about managing yourself. If you run yourself at full throttle out of the gate, sure, you’ll climb in the standings on day 1, maybe into day 2. But by now, you have dropped in the standings and you’ll continue to drop because you’ve worn yourself out. Experienced rally riders understand that pacing yourself is key and knowing what that means for them as an individual. How do you learn this about yourself? By pushing yourself and finding what works for you and what doesn’t. Additionally, experienced ralliers know the big points always come later. Those who fried themselves on the first leg will lose out on the bigger points this leg. They’ll learn, hopefully for them sooner rather than later. At the beginning of the first leg, riders were told that speeding would be monitored and there could be penalties for speeding. A handful of riders did receive nominal penalties for speeding infractions on the first leg. It was a difficult conversation for both riders and staff. It was covered at the leg 2 riders' meeting this morning and riders were told that second leg violations would result in significant penalties. We want to hold ourselves up to the maxim of safe, long-distance riding. We need to confront the "wink-wink" history of saying safe riding in rallies but tolerating other behavior. During scoring, we asked one of the younger riders how this compared to other rallies he’s done that while digital, still had several of the elements of the good old days. His answer was great (to us anyway). He wasn’t terribly fussed about the specifics of the rally process. What he liked is that the scorer really is your friend. The smart rider establishes a rapport with the person who is reviewing their items over the course of the event. If a rider reaches out to their assigned scorer to ask questions, advise of issues, or whatever it is they feel unsure of, the scorer will absolutely help them. We cannot give specific instructions on what to write on a receipt, but we will tell them to reference the rally book or whatever documentation they may have been given. In other words, we will lead them to the answer, it is up to the rider to discover it. Thank you, Herakles. We hope you enjoy this event and that we see you at many more. For the perfect example of just call your scorer, we had a bit of a kerfuffle (nod to KTS who had to drop from us at the last minute, she is missed) at a bonus in Gettysburg this morning. BPR26 – Take a photo of the statue of Lincoln. This is on the traffic circle in downtown Gettysburg, here’s the sample photo provided. The calls started at 8:04AM. “It’s not there!” But there was a little sign on the ground where it had been saying that it was removed for restoration. No problem, flag, sign, submit, done. Well, it wasn’t long before the restoration folks showed up to reinstall the statue! Oh how cool! Not so much. We can’t quite understand why, but the person overseeing this installation refused to allow riders to get a picture of the scene with their flag. Wait, what? We didn’t believe them at first, but it went downhill fast. We just had to get flexible and work with each rider who did what they are supposed to do, call their scorer to discuss what to do when unforeseen things happen. We went from this being an option – there’s the statue in the truck! To being told no flags, no photos, and get lost by this charming person. While we don’t approve of intentionally poking folks in the eye, this sneak photo is simply awesome. We are familiar with this location and can tell if riders were there, just trying to stay out of the line of fire. Almost all of them called as this is kind of an important bonus for the riders. It’s been interesting to hear each rider tell their version of events. It has apparently really gone downhill judging by some of the later calls, but we’re just telling folks to do their best. Park somewhere and try to get your flag and the truck or whatever to show that you’re there. We have asked a few riders to give this woman our phone number to make sure she understands that folks can take pictures on a public street anytime. Unfortunately, she is not interested in finding a solution. As this point about half of the riders have been there, so it’ll be over soon. Daniel Eckert found Abe mid-install. He also brought his snake charming skills and spent a little time explaining things to her about what we’re doing and why. I am certain that several riders before did this as well, but Dan was there a little later, maybe with only one person there she was more willing to listen. Anyway, by the time the last couple riders went through, Abe was back, all was right on the Gettysburg traffic circle. And here’s Abe! Thanks, Cory Ure! Art Garvin’s grandson apparently thinks he can get away with stuff on account of being an adorable little ginger. Denied. No computer-generated receipt with rider number, sequence number, and bonus code written on it. We run a tight ship here, young man. Meanwhile, rider Matt Hube thought he had a mechanical issue near Carlisle, PA trying to visit Molly Pitcher. He got to a nearby dealer who checked him out, gave a clean bill of health for the bike and off he rides. We are thrilled he’s still in and in great spirits. The checkpoint was straightforward. Folks came in, got scored, ate, went to bed. No lines for us at scoring. Rider meeting at 4:30AM, rally packs distributed, riders planned, and took off when they were ready. Some were gone quick, others took their time. Rider Kim Ross had a slow leak in his rear tire. The wonderful folks at Harrisburg High Strength V-twin are clearly friends of this community and helped him out on short notice. These are the shops we like and who deserve our support. Kim had a little time off the road to get this resolved, but nothing that will impact him in a significant way. Thanks Harrisburg High Strength V-twin! Now get going, Kim! From the field today, other than the scandal in Gettysburg, things are mostly status quo. The fabulous weather has been a popular topic of conversation. This is highly unusual. We aren’t quite sure if we will pay for all these blue skies. For now, things look favorable. We keep checking the national radar against the spot page and we remain fortunate. For now. Three days from now, the rally will be in the books and we can (hopefully) add another piece of data to the Kenneth Andrews Theory. We enjoy when riders find a “friend” to hold their flag. Here’s James Owen in Battery Park making friends. And rider Steve Gallant giving Bill Karitis a hand at National Harbor. First leg photos we got too busy to share - Bill Karitis, aka Special K 1, made our day when he reunited with Special K 2 for a couple bonuses in Frederick, MD. The pic with only Special K 2 is a water fountain for people and their animal friends in Frederick along a walking trail. Neat little spot. Seeing as no one called in unable to find it, we must have given adequate instructions. Mike Best sent in this interesting picture with a mystery person wearing a Heart of Texas hat…. We never did find out who this is, must remember to find out. On this leg, there was a manned bonus in Worcester, MA - who wouldn’t love to roll up to a bonus and be greeted by this group of fun folks? Complete with cooler full of cold water. Friends of the rally, the Belsito family, agreed to man the Senator Hoar bonus in Worcester, MA for a few hours today. Jon and Caleigh are having a super-duper time, clearly. We have loads of photos of the kids wearing Caleigh’s helmet. Daddy John was slightly horrified and wondering what kind of fungus might be growing in there after all that non-stop time in the helmet. Meh, if it doesn’t kill them, it’ll make them stronger. Mom Jessica is a friend of Nancy’s. No more needs to be said about whether or not she cares about Caleigh’s helmet funk. Here, the impromptu rock band, Rally Hoars, plays a few tunes for the good folks of Worcester, MA during the time sensitive, manned bonus on this leg. Now, I’m sure everyone just wants to know the standings, amirite? Well, here you go. Staff is heading west in the RV, or Bucket o Bolts as Tara calls it. We should arrive some time tomorrow afternoon to prepare for the riders to arrive Saturday morning.
Day 5: End of Checkpoint and Start of Leg B content media
3
0
422
Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jun 28, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
It’s checkpoint day! We are excited to see all our little dots on the map converge upon us in State College! We hope all the spectators are enjoying the names we come up with on the Spotwalla public page. While we are super excited to see the riders, we aren’t sure they are excited to see us. The list of atrocities attributed to rally masters continues to grow. Exponentially, in keeping with some of our methods. For example, Danny Dossman and other riders were in Indianapolis to collect a bonus while the sprinkler system was on. We thought these were tough riders who wouldn’t melt in a little water. Instead, the rally master was accused of bringing this rain-like scenario to fruition to ruin everything for the poor little rider. Speaking of rain, we don’t think there is anyone in this community who doesn’t know of the reputation Kenneth Andrews has to bring about crap weather. He has befouled the Heart of Texas riders and the state of Texas in general with his presence on many occasions. We love Ken and would love to have him with us, but boy are the riders having terrific weather. Is it because Ken chose to ride another event? We can’t say for sure, but the empirical evidence is becoming overwhelming. Those of you who are following on Facebook are aware that a two-up couple, JJ and Bobbie Jackson, suffered a final drive failure on their Goldwing last night near Milwaukee. They have pulled the plug and are out of the rally. They are disappointed, as are we, they were very competitive, and we were enjoying watching them. The Cover/Rufo 3-way team is out due to illness. They appeared to be having a grand time and we are sad to see them go. But obviously, health comes before rallying. Also advertised/discussed on Facebook was a rider in need of a rear tire for his GSA. There were some super helpful responses, and we are so fortunate to have Chris Purney already planning to be here tonight and he’ll give the rider his rear wheel. They’ll sort out the return swap down the road. Sounds like a good excuse to meet for BBQ in the middle and make an RTE out of it to meet up with other friends as well. Details TBD. When we said the weather has been great, we were not kidding. It’s phenomenal. Not just here in State College. Looking at the photos coming in, wow. This is ideal weather. Since Paul gets blamed when riders aren’t happy with weather, sprinklers, protests, street festivals, etc; let it be known by all that Paul is also being credited with providing the riders with fantastic weather. That is all. We shared a photo of Jon Kerr’s daughter yesterday channeling her inner Sacajawea. Her real name is Caleigh, pronounced like the city in France. She’s been a ton of fun and we sure enjoy when a bonus comes in from rider #8. In all seriousness, wouldn’t it be amazing to sit for tea (or whatever) with Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass? Scoring opens at 3. As of 1:45PM, there is one bike in and another looks like it’s close. Penalties start at 9PM, DNF at 10PM. On penalties. We don’t like lateness. Penalties are tough. Riders are penalized at 2 to the power of number of minutes late. So being a couple minutes late isn’t a huge deal, but it gets ugly fast. To demonstrate: 3 minutes late – 23 = 8 10 minutes late – 210 = 1,024 20 minutes late – 220 = 1,048,576 In case you missed the exponential reference earlier, you probably get it now. We like exponents and use them to encourage good behavior. Staff is assembled, Andy Kirby and his wife Sue joined us for the checkpoint to assist herding the cats. Core staff is here, of course. Nancy and Jeff are doing all the scoring. Tara will be checking odometers as riders come in. Paul is doing Paul stuff. Greg Rice arrived and there are several other folks planning to be here to see the riders and lend a hand if anyone needs something. That is always appreciated by the riders. And the staff because you take something off us. Well, this report will be a little shorter today. We’re about to get busy. Will provide more scoop, standings after the first leg and any other gossip from the checkpoint. All is well here and as long as riders remain accounted for, we are happy.
Day 4 : Checkpoint State College, PA content media
7
0
425
Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jun 27, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Well friends, we knew it would start to happen at some point. When you play the odds, you’ll come up somewhere you wish you weren’t sooner or later. We are no different. We are just grateful that everyone is, or will be, okay. Bruce Scudella got word from home that there was a situation that couldn’t wait for him to complete the rally and get back home. He headed back to address the situation. We will miss him in State College and back in Cheyenne, but very sincerely hope everything works out for all involved as favorably as possible. Hoping to see him again at future events. The Handleys had a deer encounter of the variety we all fear. The first message received advised of the deer strike, but said they were both completely fine and so was the bike. Handleys 1, Bambi 0. Yeah, well, things got tied up soon after when they tried to use the brakes and realized something was definitely wrong. The forest rat simply refused to go down without a fight and bent their rotor on the way out. They are in a hotel now next to a dealer who is closed today but will seek assistance tomorrow. They won’t be able to make the checkpoint but do plan to join the merriment at the finish. We are grateful they are okay and in good spirits. We are unable to make jokes about Tim Allen. He was involved in an accident in IL and broke several bones in his foot. Neither bike nor rider will be able to proceed. He is in the process of arranging transportation back to the Seattle area to see his local physicians. We wish him the best and sincerely hope to see him again at future events. He will always be a welcome addition with his friendly smile and great attitude. Now for the riders still in it. All seem to be having a great time and are in good spirits. The communication with scoring is mostly fun banter and we like that. A lot. Some fun pictures from the road: Many in the community know, or know of, Jon Kerr. The doctor who broke his leg during the 2017 Iron Butt Rally. Quit? Oh heck no. Sourced a new ride and just strapped the crutches on while riding. In other words, he’s a bad ass. We’ve had him at the Heart of Texas and always enjoy having him. This time, he brought his 21-year-old daughter along and we’re enjoying her presence very much as well. Sacajawea Kerr is always welcome at our events. Ben Ernst apparently has been hiding his pillion in his top box. Either that or he’s been working on his best, “Hey little girl, want to hold my rally flag?” For those who have been around the Heart of Texas, you probably already know that there is always a theme and it is followed fairly extensively. In 2021, there was a Blues Brothers theme for Holy Rollin’. Paul and Nancy dressed as Elwood and Jake Blues down to the knuckle tattoos and made quite the entrance into the rider meeting by recreating Elwood and Jake’s entrance at Palace Hotel Ballroom show. Well, Ben Ernst actually made a U-Turn to go back and get a picture of this for us. Thank you, Ben. Great memories. Otherwise, riders are doing what riders do. Overthinking, underthinking, making mistakes, realizing they made mistakes and trying to fix them, and so forth. The RV crew made it to State College and got settled in. We’re all set up in the scoring area and working away. The weather appears to be mostly pleasant for most riders so far. There is a bit of a heat wave in Texas impacting some riders. This can be very unpleasant and impact a rider’s ability to think and reason. Bill Karitis, affectionately known as Special K 1 in these parts, fell victim yesterday and got a little more frustrated than he normally would trying to find a bonus. He has since cooled down and is fine. It’s a good lesson, hopefully one he will remember during the 2023 Iron Butt Rally. Rider Jeff Johnson is one smart cookie. At least in this regard 😊. He was in Milwaukee bonus collecting and about to get on the ferry across Lake Michigan. He reached out to his scorer to ask if he could take a meal break on the ferry. Friend, your side stand will be down, if you can get a good receipt for food, sure, you can do that. The ride on the Lake Express is about 2.5 hours, that’s more than 45 minutes. Good thinking, Jeff. Dave Gillihan seems to be surviving okay without his better half. Heather has been a very welcome addition to our events, and we hope she gets her priorities straight next time and chooses rally over new job. Seriously, Heather. The always smiling John Anderson once again maintained his sunny disposition through adversity. John was lunching at the Michelin Star Sapp Brothers in Hendersonville, MO and left his flag. Everyone knows that can be quite tragic. In this event, he would lose half his points. John was 144 miles from the restaurant when he realized this and so he went back. There was a joyous, jubilant celebration with tears, smiles, hugs and adoration. In other words, John got his flag back and is riding 144 miles back to the bonus where he realized his egregious error. Seriously, talking to John through this, he was just happy to have found the flag. He wasn’t too upset about having to modify (reduce) his plan, this is why John will always be welcome at our events. He can adjust and continue without letting past events that impacted him impact what happens going forward. Fix it and move on. Good job, John. In other exciting news, the host hotel in State College had a little bit of a disaster and several rooms hotel rooms are not rentable. Oops. Fortunately, there’s another hotel nearby that several riders have been moved to. Riders were advised of this at the start meeting. We are trying to move as many back over as we can. But it appears that several will be at the hotel a couple doors down. It’s disappointing, but it’s just a small thing that folks need to accept as life. They have a room; it’s just located in a nearby building. Not ideal, but as John Anderson would do, smile, shake it off, and move on. Everyone is still accounted for. Some a little worse for the wear, but nothing a little TLC and maybe a little surgery won’t fix. We look forward to the riders arriving on Tuesday afternoon!
LDX Rally: Day 3 content media
6
3
427
Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jun 26, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
https://youtu.be/MmtlzhIlg2Y
4
0
290
Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jun 26, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Riders are out there scarfing up bonuses. Staff is rolling toward the checkpoint. Life is good. There is a George Washington bonus in Rapid City, SD that’s been popular with riders. We’ve seen some fun pictures from this location. Seems the kind folks of Rapid City are willing to help a rallier in need by holding their flag. One person was shy though and hid behind George with only little hands peeking out holding the flag. Hey, it works. But the one that brought the biggest smile to scoring was from Paul Meyer. Two friends of this organization, David Uhl and Lionel Ramos, were in Rapid City to start the Hoka Hey and held Paul’s flag for the photo. Lovely surprise for us to receive. Lots of other fun photos coming in. Riders appear to have gotten the memo about replicating the example photo they were given. Some of them also appear to be a bit paranoid and will call in to ask very specific questions to ensure they get it right. These are never the riders who have the issue it seems. They were already well within the boundaries of acceptable replication. Such is life, right? Hey, we’re just glad we can stop denying so many bonuses. And we like hearing from riders. We do know the riders work hard to get to these places. But we simply must hold everyone to the same standard and cannot grant points to those who don’t follow instructions. RV life is, um, interesting. We still feel like this was the way to go. With all our stuff and 4 people, this allowed us to remain available, scoring to continue, place to sleep, eat, etc. However, man is this a rough ride! Trying to use the mouse on the computer is frustrating. Around the Chicago area, we just had to take a break, it wasn’t possible at all. The hotspots we got are doing what we need them to do. Some data loss further west, but overall, completely acceptable. We will be very ready to get to the checkpoint and off the road, but I think we are all in agreement that this worked well. We are working on a list of things to discuss at the meeting to start the next leg. Reminders, cautions, etc. For example, riders have been told to contact their scorer when they have an issue finding a bonus, with the app, whatever. Including the scorer in the decision-making process leads to success most of the time. We can’t, well won’t, do it for them, but boy do we point them to finding it themselves. Or if it’s just that they sent the wrong photo, call us, don’t try to fix it yourself! Here’s an example that we will discuss at the meeting. One of the riders ordered up his food for a meal bonus and when he got the receipt, there was no time on it. Instead of just doing stuff he thought would be accepted, he called. Or texted I think. Anyway, he communicated. That’s the important thing. Can I write the time on it? He was asked to send in the receipt via text to review. Oh sure, it’s a fully computer-generated receipt from a truck stop, they just don’t have the time on it. But guess what? We can access his spot track, see where he is, it matches the receipt. Solution found. Now, it’s still up to the rider to successfully claim the meal bonus, but he needn’t worry about the lack of a time printed on the receipt. Have we discussed meal bonuses? I don’t think so. We strongly encourage riders to sit down and have a meal at least once a day. Sit. Down. Eat. 45 minutes off the bike. This allows for a sit down, server brings you food at many locations. Or McDonalds. That’s completely acceptable as well. But food. 45 minutes. This is done through the app, riders don’t need a “start” and “end” receipt for this. We have means to check on them and we do. You know, trust but verify. Or for some of them, “what is that sneaky rider up to now, let’s dig into this a bit.” For this leg, 3 meal bonuses are available. One each day on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. Tuesday is the checkpoint. We’ll offer them food in State College. Oh! How could we have forgotten! Yesterday we spotted a rider in the wild! He was tooling along on I-80 and we came along side staring at him, hoping he’d look over. Nope, so we took a picture of him and texted it to him. He finally realized who was hovering over him and then drafted us for a bit before heading off to gather a bonus. Dan Eckert, you were a bright spot, no doubt. Another fun picture from the road. Morris Cox stopped by to stand on the corner with Glenn Frey in Winslow, AZ: Riders also have an optional rest bonus on this leg. We absolutely encourage adequate rest every single day. However, we only award points for one. There’s a points per minute value, BUT, as with all things Paul does, it’s not that simple. Remember those meal breaks available each day? Well, they become the exponent of the 2 a rider’s rest is multiplied by. You can make a rider do just about anything by making it worth enough points. Example - let’s say a rider earns 1000 points on rest. 0 meals = 1000 x 20 = 1000 1 meal = 1000 x 21 = 2000 2 meals = 1000 x 22 = 4000 3 meals = 1000 x 23 = 8000 Taking full rest and meals is very appealing. As designed. This also means that making an error and missing one really hurts or has potential to. Missing or messing up the rest bonus would clearly be 0 points, 0 times 2 to any power is still 0. Ouch. Stay tuned for more fun with exponents. We require riders to assist anyone, rally participant or not, in need. If there’s accident and emergency personnel are already on scene, nothing is required, keep going. But if someone needs help but doesn’t have it, riders must stop. Even if all they can is call 9-1-1 to get help on the way. If riders get themselves involved in a situation like this, they are to call rally staff after getting 9-1-1 on the way so we can account for the time and give them allowance at the conclusion of the leg. We want this community to be looked upon favorably, as folks who will not just go by someone who needs emergency assistance. While perhaps not quite an emergency, we did have a rider stop to assist a motorcyclist broken down on a freeway ramp. Unfortunately, a lift was needed to complete the repair, but our rider did stop, loan tools and wrench turning to try and get a fellow rider back on the road. Thank you for letting your actions speak our intentions. All riders remain safe and accounted for. One rider is having mechanical issues, but he’s working on sorting it out and getting to State College so he can continue in the second leg. Another decided to head home for some family issues. But they are safe. Just about every rider we talk to says what a great time they’re having. That’s what it’s all about for us.
LDX Rally: Day 2 content media
6
0
388
Paul Tong
First Member Club
First Member Club
Jun 25, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Riders gathered for the start meeting at 4:30AM to discover their fate for the next 3+ days. LDX does not skimp on adherence to a theme. Many, many, many hours went into preparing the rider rally packs. We hope the riders enjoyed receiving them as much as we enjoyed making them. So, what’s the theme you ask? The event is titled Founding Fathers. While many folks think of George Washington and Ben Franklin when they hear this term, that’s not how we are using it. The Term was established long ago and is the lingua franca definition of those persons of yesteryear, men and women, white and black, the colonizers and the indigenous people whose actions and lives are the threads which weave the fabric of our current existence. In using the Term, we strictly use it as the common term to define all persons who are responsible for who we are and where we are today. Further, we recognize that not all these people are righteous and honorable. We recognize that they are human beings, flawed by human nature, sculpted by the culture and practices of their time. We do not celebrate the misdeeds of those we view as wicked or cruel, but rather acknowledge that they have a place in the foundation on which our past, present, and future are built. A staff favorite on this leg, Thomas Earl Starzl, is known as “the father of modern transplantation” (meaning human organs). We consider him to be a “Founding Father.” If you’re interested in learning a bit more about the origins of human organ transplantation, we recommend “When Death Becomes Life” by Joshua D. Mezrich. There is also a documentary, “Burden of Genius” covering the medical and scientific advances spearheaded by Starzl himself. Additionally, he wrote an autobiographical memoir, The Puzzle People. We are grateful for his dedication to this live saving endeavor. Okay, more rally scoop, we hear you. Rallymaster, Paul Tong, put together an amazing video presentation for the riders to introduce the theme. It is truly something to see. It’ll get posted in the not-too-distant future, we encourage you to check it out. In typical Paul fashion, there was a very grand entrance at the conclusion of the introductory video. In case you haven’t seen a picture on social media just yet: After the video, Paul continued with explaining to the riders what they were getting themselves into. All bonus locations this year are statues dedicated to someone we could categorize as a founder or pioneer of something noteworthy in our history. Rosa Parks, Susan B Anthony, Elizabeth Stanton, Frederick Douglas, Hank Aaron, you get the picture. We strongly encourage you to check out the rally book when it is posted soon after the rally. But to give you a glimpse of the scheme (and explain Paul’s attire), riders can increase their points on non-George Washington bonuses by visiting George Washington bonuses in between. Obviously, there’s a lot of George Washington statues around the country and we expect them to be heavily visited between the start and checkpoint on Tuesday. Basically, for each GW statue successfully claimed increases the value of subsequent non-GW statues by 75 points. Each time a GW is successfully claimed with a non-GW after, there’s an additional 75 points added. First iteration, 75 points, second iteration, 150 points, etc. There are also a variety of combination bonuses available focusing on some of the categories like sports figures or civil rights figures to name a couple. We’ll post a bunch of photos from internationally acclaimed photographer, Tobie Stevens, later today showing some of the fun had at the app tutorial, rider meeting and odo check/bike staging and take off. The Cheyenne Police Department was kind enough to provide a professional courtesy to our esteemed Rallymaster to assist with a smooth and safe exit. All bikes were off the lot in less than 2 minutes. We had a wonderful surprise visit minutes before the start when Wendy Crockett and Ian McPhee stopped by for a quick visit in the middle of whatever it is they’re up to. They arrived just as the last-minute rider’s meeting was about to begin and Paul needed to remind everyone that celebrity sightings are not a valid excuse for missing important information disseminated at this meeting. Speaking of riders not listening to instructions, or the dreaded failure of reading comprehension, the first warning has been distributed. It was strongly emphasized in the 4:30AM rider’s meeting AND explained in an underlined paragraph in the rally book that you must match the sample photo as closely as possible or your submission will be denied. It specifically said not to take the photo from further away. “If you do, you risk the bonus being denied and your argument is invalid.” It was also discussed that we are reasonable and if there is an acceptable reason you did what you did, it is likely to be approved. I wonder if they’ll do a better job following the no whining rule. In all seriousness, this is difficult for scorers. We stress to the riders over and over that we want to help you. We want to approve everything. Unfortunately, we also expect riders to follow the explicitly discussed and written requirements. This rally is a steppingstone to the Iron Butt Rally. Regardless of whether specific requirements of the IBR are the same or different, the point is that a rider simply must follow them. Or be denied the points. We play no tricks, there is no interpretation. Everything is straightforward. A puzzle, yes, but no tricks or games are being played. Enough on this subject, wanna talk about the app a little more? Of course you do. It’s really slick. We are rolling down I-80 in the RV and scoring bonuses as Nebraska slides by. By the way, gas is really expensive. Our gas pump at Love’s in North Platte shut off because of the dollar value before we filled the tank! The riders are given rally and rider specific codes so the app will populate with the appropriate information. When they arrive to a bonus, they select the desired bonus code, take the correct photo and hit submit. That is literally it. As described earlier, the sequence bonuses are gathered matters in this event, so smart ralliers will ensure that the sequence number matches what they think it should be. If they get off somehow or are confused, best bet is to call their scorer – either Nancy or Jeff – to sort it out. The scorers would much rather help a rider get straight than continually deny bonuses because of technology confusion. That is not our objective. We like communicating with the riders. And really enjoy it when the correspondence ends with “I’m having a blast!” Thank you, Paul Meyer. And Jeff Salyer apparently likes to share his good times with photos to staff as well. We like it. Thanks, Jeff. Well folks, that is all for today. All riders are safe to our knowledge and that is really all that matters to us. We are grateful for this.
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Jun 25, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Pics for Day -2 content media
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Jun 25, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
Day -1 is provided by the attached PDF file. Download, read, and enjoy
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Jun 24, 2022
In 2022 LDX Rally - Daily Reports
The inaugural LDX Rally will be starting on Saturday, June 25 in Cheyenne, WY. We would like to take this opportunity to give a little back story on the sport for friends and family of riders who may be curious about what it is we do. What is “LDX”? LD = Long Distance. X = a variable. Gives us the flexibility to make it however many days works with the particulars of the event year to year. In 2022, the event is 7 days long with one checkpoint in State College, PA. Riders will return to Cheyenne for the finish on Saturday, July 2nd. How does it work? LDX is similar to other Endurance Rallies (or Long Distance Rallies). Riders will receive a document prior to the start with details of how this particular game will be played. Some rallies are fairly straightforward, listing several locations where riders earn points by completing the assigned task. Often this is taking a photo of a specific item, perhaps the largest ball of twine. Or it may be to get a receipt from a certain business or town. There are innumerable options, these are two common ones. Riders could not possibly get all of the items, so they need to plan how they can get the most points. The rider who successfully gathers the most points wins. Some rallies, and LDX is certainly one of them, have a little more to them. The scheme, or method of receiving credit for bonuses collected, is a bit more nuanced. A few examples from prior year’s Heart of Texas rallies: · Collecting head of cattle by visiting certain locations and then ‘driving’ them to market to be sold. Different locations offered different # of cattle along 4 different cattle trails. Riders then were able to sell only the cattle for that specific trail at a market. The price per head depended which market they went to. There were opportunities to add to the price per head on one or multiple trails, or other means to maximize profit. Rider with the most profit wins · Visiting various racing tracks to collect points, but of course, the riders needed to have fuel in order to race, so they would need to stop at designated ‘pit stops’ prior to visiting the track in order to earn those points. No one actually raced on a track, many of them no longer existed, they were just a sign, or were for go carts or radio controlled vehicles. But there were points associated with each track. Rider with the most points wins. · Holy Rollin’ was a Blues Brothers themed event where riders needed to raise the money needed to save the orphanage by touring with the band and playing the hit songs from their latest album at various churches. Each church equated to a letter of the alphabet. Riders collected the letters to spell the names of the songs, which happened to be the same as the books of the New Testament. Rider who earns the most for the orphanage wins. · LDX will be something else entirely. No tricks, just something to make the game more interesting than a simple traveling salesman problem. What do the riders do on the road? Mostly sit there and twist that. For most of the day. Many rides will eat and drink while on the road to maximize efficiency. They carry auxiliary fuel to minimize fuel stops. They might save the time and potential hassle of locating and checking into a hotel and just nap alongside their motorcycle somewhere. Or ON their motorcycle. Some riders actually carry sleep kits to accomplish this. Is it a race? NO, this is definitely not a race. There is nothing to be gained by finishing first or getting to a particular bonus before anyone else. Speeding is not condoned. Staff has tracking devices on the riders and we watch for signs of chronic violators and deal with them accordingly. A rider can return early to a checkpoint or the finish, but arriving too late results in being time barred. There is a window where riders can return and still finish but receive penalty points. Because we do not like lateness, we penalize heavily. Couple minutes, you’ll be okay. 30 minutes and will really wish you didn’t stop for that Big Mac. Who does this anyway? All sorts of people, men, women, young, old. Tends to be a lot of “older” males, but everyone is welcome. A woman won the Iron Butt Rally in 2019; there really isn’t any advantage on gender or age. It’s all about endurance, good planning and self-management. The winning rider is able to endure sitting on a motorcycle for extended periods (more on this later) and can plan a route that is both attainable and garners the rider more point than everyone else. A very important element here is being able to manage yourself. Eating, drinking, sleeping, other needs that simply must be managed to keep the rider mentally alert and able to process the requirements of each site. There’s all sorts of folks in this crowd. Some are hard chargers trying to win. Others are out to have a fun ride and see some new places they otherwise would not have gone. Others are somewhere in between and trying to ride their best ride. They are all great friends who would do most anything for each other. Most folks ride by themselves, but enjoy running into someone along the way. And the finish banquet/party is always a great time of story telling from the road and enjoying each other’s company. Are there allowances for bad weather? Oh heavens no. These folks claim to be the World’s Toughest Riders. Suck it up, buttercup. Seriously, this is part of self-management. Obviously, one cannot ride into a tornado safely. But what amount of wind can a rider handle? How about rain? Cold? Heat? How about going from 35 and rain in the morning to 110 in the desert a few hours later? Riders need to remain situationally aware and plan accordingly. They must know their limits and respect them. Oh cool! I want to know more! Easy there, grasshopper. It’s late, we’re tired and have a big day getting everyone officially registered tomorrow. But photos have been taken to give you a tour of a fairly common bike set up and we’ll explain tomorrow. A few shots of the day from none other than rally photographer extaordinaire, Tobie Stevens, included here for your enjoyment. Rally master, Paul Tong, works to load all the accoutrement needed into the hotel under the supervision of rally staff, Lisa Stevens. Rally staff, Jeff Konicek, hanging out with riders in the hotel lobby. Lots of amazing folks in this crowd. Rally master, Paul Tong will travel to and from the checkpoint with rally staff Jeff Konicek, Nancy Oswald (pictured here) and Tara Tong in this snazzy RV. This allows the staff to roll continuously. Working, taking turns driving and napping.
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