Duke Dunsford
Post Posted: Tue Aug 05, 2003 10:28 pm
 Subject: Our man in the IBR; Report head's-up.

Everyone,

As you know our very own Leon Begeman is entered in the 2003 Iron Butt Rally which begins next Monday in Missoula, Montana.. We're fortunate to now have two members of this board who have been entered in this incredible semi-anual event. Andrew Duthie- 49th place finisher, 2001 - Kawi Concours, and now Leon in his debut event. He'll be attempting the event this year on a modified Ninja 250, the first person to ever do so. Even smaller bikes have finished in the past, but a new minimum performance rule has been put into place making the Ninja 250 one of the smaller bikes capable of qualifying.

I'll be in daily contact with Leon during the rally, and with his permission posting progress reports here for those who want to follow along.

At last report he's en route from his VA home to Missoula, MT with the bike in tow. He expects to arrive in Missoula on Saturday. For those interested, the bike has been fitted with oxygen sensors on each header pipe and an adjustable mixture device on the carburetors (Dial-a-jet). The engine has a beefed-up lower end and improved valve seats, purposed to withstand the demand of 11 days straight on the road 16-18 hours each day. Many of you have seen the outer appearance of the bike with the truck bed liner paint, 11 gallon gas tank, and huge rubbermaid 'trunk'. This is certainly not your ordinary 250. Utilitarian to the core.

The rally starts Monday AM and will last for 11 days. There is some buzz of a possible bonus in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, 1000 miles south of San Diego. Will he go for it? You can bet your bottom dollar there'll be several other 'extreme' destinations worth big point.s. For more details check www.ironbutt.com. Should be daily updates there beginning this weekend.

If I hear anything substantial from Leon between now and Sunday PM I'll keep you posted

-Duke
ghostrider
Post Posted: Tue Aug 05, 2003 10:36 pm
 Subject: What a great adventure...will be looking for the posts....

I want a dial a jet. Like the hot rodders of yore. Dial rich and throw flames from the exhaust using a glow plug (relatively harmless fun).
loudboys
Post Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2003 12:13 am
 Subject: not to mention Goose Bay...., keep an eye out Wes! (n/t)

Jeb
Post Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2003 7:02 am
 Subject: good luck, leon; we're rooting for you (n/t)

Wes
Post Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2003 10:23 am
 Subject: Goose Bay?

My step daughter is there right now, but it's about a 25 hour trip from here. Leon rode there last year, though -- dumped is ZX6 on that piece of dirt 500 miles long they call a road. Is that one of the bonus locations this year?

Wes
loudboys
Post Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2003 12:41 pm
 Subject: that's the rumor; and if he's already been there....

and it's a bonus, wouldn't you think? And you're closer than the rest of us Smile
Vancouver Dave
Post Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2003 12:56 pm
 Subject: Re: Goose Bay?

Bonuses aren't announced until the day of each checkpoint. However, Kneebone
and crew are known to drop lots of hints. Like two years ago saying that you'd
probably need a bike capable of gravel roads.

Then the first checkpoint, they announced Alaska, with the provisio that the
second leg would contain equally remote bonuses. Well, there isn't too much more
remote than Deadhorse, so more than a few people waited until the second c/p to
head there. I think two or three finished.

One of the guys I know busted his rear shock coming back down. Denali NP to
Alabama, 3/4 of that with a hardtail. Ouch.

It's a gruelling mindfuck. And then there's the backtracking. People hate backtracking.
Eric R
Post Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2003 2:29 pm
 Subject: Go Leon! (n/t)

Duke Dunsford
Post Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2003 11:28 pm
 Subject: I've run the numbers

Missoula to Cabo to Goose Bay to Missoula is a little under 10K and only 9 days. Too easy for the winning route. They'll have to throw Mexico City or Cancun or Key West or Seattle or some other rediculous place in there to make it interesting.

Leon initially has said he's not interested in Mexico. I also remember him saying he wouldn't want to go to Labrador during the rally. Finishing is a more important task. We'll see once the bonuses are announced.
nero
Post Posted: Sat Aug 09, 2003 12:07 pm
 Subject: Go Leon!

This is really cool, I'd love to do something like this one day. Like a less costly version of the Gumball 3000.....

Anyways, thanks alot for the updates Duke! Let Leon know that we're all rooting for him.
Ben-Diesel
Post Posted: Mon Aug 11, 2003 10:09 am
 Subject: Here's to Leon! (n/t)

Andrew Duthie
Post Posted: Tue Aug 12, 2003 12:53 am
 Subject: Re: I've run the numbers

Err, 10k in 9 days is possible, but not easy, on *good* roads. On bad roads and slow roads, good luck. Deadhorse would be easy mileage-wise, except that the road is a gruelling, rutted, mud pit for much of the way, unless you get lucky with the weather.
Andrew Duthie
Post Posted: Tue Aug 12, 2003 12:55 am
 Subject: Define less costly

Okay, the entry fee is only $1300 or thereabouts, which is cheap for an 11-day event. But throw in tires, hotels, gas, food, and all the piles of gear you end up buying to get ready, and it's not cheap at all. A $5000 budget would be reasonable-to-skimpy for most riders.

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