Duke Dunsford
Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 12:06 pm
 Subject: Hello everyone - So many thanks...

Back in the real world today - The past three weeks but a blur of memory now...

I'm simply overwhelmed by the support you all extended my way, and fittingly I must say a big thank you to everyone for the tremendous encouragement to Heather and to me throughout the rally. I was getting daily reports of all the activity on this board, and it was quite comforting and inspiring to know so many folks were interested in my ride. I only wish I could give each of you a personal thank you.

I'm feeling a bit better since I've arrived home. I have a nasty purple 'K-12 footpeg sized' bruise on my left side at the base of my ribcage, and still find it somewhat difficult to breath deeply and still sleep is a bit elusive. I have 4 or 5 ribs which are injured on my left side, just below my elbow. It will be a few weeks before I'm back to normal. fortunately I've finally found some sleep sitting semi-upright in a lazy-boy chair at home.

The dissapointment in Maine was almost more than I could handle knowing I would not be able to give it my best for leg 3. Fortunately I found the strength and determination to fight through the hurricane, the language barrier in New Brunswick and Quebec, the utter dissapointment in blowing a 9,222 point bonus picture on day 8, the mental challenge from the lack of sleep, and the terrible pain in my side. Through it all I managed to continue on - In part finding encouragement from knowing so many folks were pulling for me, and I wasn't planning to let you down. Finishing became the target for the last 4 days of the rally, and I'm happy to say I reached that goal.

Hopefully in the future I'll be able to dig out a suitable ride report. Much of the memory is already gone - but I still have vivid memories of many thoughts, sights and emotions of the 11-day ride. Until then, thank you again for everyone's incredible support. Most importantly thank you to my wonderful wife Heather, my great family, to Leon, Alan and Jennifer, to everyone who showed up at the start line and the finisher's party in Kansas City, and to the fantastic group of friends who supported me every mile of the journey! I look forward to seeing each of you soon!

Duke Dunsford
59th finisher, 2005 Iron Butt Rally
Ninja 250 rider
Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 12:42 pm
 Subject: we're just glad to have you back safely....

and as for the reading comprehension problem; if you'd gold medaled on your first try, you wouldn't have an excuse to do this again in a few years. As it is, you've still got something to prove (besides, you need to beat the guy on the antique Beemer).

It could be fun; you and Leon head-to-head in the hopeless class, ninjette vs turbo-diesel hog (hog license plate: Stinky). Smile
Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 1:37 pm
 Subject: Glad you're safely at home

Strum your dulcimer; it'll soothe you and your ribs. Smile

What's the story with the 9222 point bonus? That would have moved you up 10 spots! I somewhat know how you feel; after digging through the mobs of tourists in Charleston in the 2005 Palmetto Ramble, I finally got down to the battery but couldn't find the dang monument! I was SO close, but my time was extremely limited, so I had to leave it behind and just get back to Columbia and not be time-barred. That bonus would have put me in fifth place. Argh!

Eric R
Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 2:08 pm
 Subject: Way to go, Duke!

Achieving a finish in this rally is an accomplishment in and of itself, just look at the list of DNF's.
Doing so over the last four days was a display of fortitude that I think many of us don't even know if we could match!
Duke Dunsford
Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 2:42 pm
 Subject: Cape Bear Light

At the Cape Bear Light on Prince Edward Island, I failed to include my bike in the picture as per the instructions. Apparently in my delerium (it was 4:30am the morning after my rib injury) I looked at the bonus sheet requirement and the bike requirement never registered. It was the second largest bonus in the rally for me. I realized the mistake about 6 hours later when it was too late to go back. At that point I wanted to quit and go home - I was suffering a mental meltdown. Heather reminded me of something I'd proclaimed earlier in the rally, "If I finish last place, I'll have acomplished something monumental". That thought was enough to keep me going, and got me through the journey's deepest valley.

Interestingly - The Marconi Station at Cape Bear was the first place to recieve the distress signal from the Titanic in 1912.
Andrew Duthie
Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 6:25 pm
 Subject: Start writing notes right now, if you haven't already.

I've still never sat down to write an actual travelog of my 2001 ride, but I was able to take a page or two of notes during the rally. Those notes are what keep me from forgetting a lot of the silly little details that make the stories more interesting. I also took quite a few photos, which likewise serve as reminders.

Speaking of which... If you want to talk about your experience with the Green Hills Rotary chapter, I'm sure my dad can get you in the schedule. They've gone four years without an Iron Butt story, so they might like to hear a new one, now. Very Happy

And congratulations! Killer ride, even what with mucking yourself up towards the end. Also, take a look at the attrition rate this year! 2001 was apparently "too easy," since such a high percentage of riders finished. Wink
Post Posted: Wed Sep 07, 2005 12:19 am
 Subject: Belated Congratulations-amazing, wonderful accomplishment :-)

Post Posted: Wed Sep 07, 2005 11:23 am
 Subject: Congrats!...you came in 1st in my book,

and that's not just conjecture on my part. You were the only one to finish on a Kawasaki and to me, it doesn't matter that nobody else even tried. Thanks to guys like you and Leon, not only do you promote the name brand, you show the world that even one of Kawasaki's smallest and oldest bikes is up for the challenge. I think they should send you a new bike at the very least.
Post Posted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 10:58 pm
 Subject: Awesome work Duke

You built a killer machine and took it to the end. Thanks for hanging in there; you've made us all proud.
Post Posted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 11:24 pm
 Subject: Here's the pic from the morning after the morning after. :-)

Post Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 12:18 am
 Subject: What are your future bike plans?

Do you plan to keep riding the rally bike as your daily rider? What will you do with your black bike?

Andrew Duthie
Post Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 12:21 am
 Subject: Seems to me he's owed Heather a bike for quite some time... :D

Andrew Duthie
Post Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 12:21 am
 Subject: Ooh-hey, that's enough to get me tied with Daryl! (Sumbitted to GRR)

Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2005 12:12 pm
 Subject: Re: Ooh-hey, that's enough to get me tied with Daryl! (Sumbitted to GR

Unfortunately, there's no Ninja 250 in the picture.
No points for you!
Post Posted: Sat Sep 10, 2005 12:30 pm
 Subject: Yes there is. Check the bed of the truck.

Duke Dunsford
Post Posted: Sun Sep 11, 2005 2:24 am
 Subject: Re: What are your future bike plans?

Bike? What's a Bike?

At this point I still wake up almost every night with dreams/nightmares about the rally. Heather has had to wake me up 4 different nights since the finish, yelling, "The rally is over!" The last time it happened around 2am - I was upset I was going to be late for the checkpoint the next morning. Heather had to tell me the date and the fact the rally had been over for a week. I had no recollection of ever being at the finish.

Once I put the Metzler back on the black bike, I plan to keep them both. The black will be a commuter/sport bike, and the silver will remain in touring/rally duty. The rally bike needs a new front fender and some paint to touch up the battle damage. I'm sure that once my ribs heal (I can still only sleep 2-3 hours at a time) I'll be more inclined to get back on my bikes.

Post Posted: Sun Sep 11, 2005 3:32 pm
 Subject: What about Heather?

Is Heather still wanting her own bike? I did kind of think one of these would become hers after the rally! Smile

Duke Dunsford
Post Posted: Mon Sep 12, 2005 11:12 am
 Subject: They're both hers..:-)

As far as I'm concerned she can ride either one whenever she wants. I'll be happy to ride the other...They're both fine bikes.
Post Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 5:43 pm
 Subject: Re: Yes there is. Check the bed of the truck.

Oh no, that bike is barely visable, and can be ANYTHING from a Ninja 500 to a Concours.
Didn't the rules state quite clearly that the bike has to be 100% identifiable as a Ninja 250, and in the foreground?

No0 points for you.
Post Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 6:21 pm
 Subject: no points for me, anyway...

but several points for Troy and Andrew. Besides, the rallymaster was right there to verify its 250ness.

Now, go be evil to some newbie. Tongue
Andrew Duthie
Post Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 6:47 pm
 Subject: Pish. Read the rules, answer yer question.; Ya punk. :D

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