New Toscana report released


Guckst Du „Tour Reports“: Toscana 2012


„Another epic failure in the long history of IBA rallies…“

…that’s what I heard on Sunday evening. A lot of things have happened during my last post and they all deserve a long detailled report, but let me summarize briefly the facts:

In France, the warning light of the charging voltage lit.

I had to decide what to do: Is the alternator dead or is it just a low voltage. It would have been only 200 km to home.

I decided to take the high risk and to return to the UK, managed to get on and off the train.

At that time, I was a sensational 3 hours ahead of my planning, everything worked PERFECT.

After 40 km in England, the ignition had used all the energy from the battery and the motor went out.

I had to wait five ours for a rescue service (on a motorway!) plus another our to find an accomodation.

I received a rental car and returned to the rally venue. With some frustration, I realised that I’d have finished (probably) at least second with good chances for the first!!! I received a special recognition for my efforts to return :-). Had nice chats with other riders.

On the next day I talked to the garage. As expected, the repair will take a while. I learned that I couldn’t leave the UK with the rental car, as it was not and could not be insured for the continent. I went to London, catched one of the last tickets for the Eurostar to Brussels and returned after a long odyssey at midnight at home.

I think of the last days as: „If you fail, do it with style“.

Plan the ride, ride the plan


This was a tough planning until 00:30 a.m. The rally master didn’t make it very easy. Rough planning includes a trip over to France (Yes! From Leeds!) and an extensive treasure hunting in London before going back north. Keep fingers crossed! I try to get some sleep, the alarm will ring at 5 a.m.

Waiting for the riders meeting….

Tonight I had a rather unquiet night, the vibrations from the ship .made it difficult to get some sleep. After arrival in Kingston-upon-Hull, I first searched an ATM to get some local money. I get decided to use the morning to visit locations of the Sculpture Trail organised by the BBR competitor Rob Roalfe I decided not to visit three locations in the north, but to keep it relaxed and to visit only one place in Lincoln. I will see the other locations on a different occasion anyway, I hope.

"Empowerment" sculpture in Lincoln.

„Empowerment“ sculpture in Lincoln.

I found the monument easily, sun was shining, perfect conditions. After taking the picture I learned from a display that the MAgna Charta is stored in Lincoln Castle nearby. I continued and one hour later I arrived in Castleford, the start and end point of the 2012 Brit Butt Rally. I could directly check in and after a shopping tour (water, candy bars, breakfast for tomorrow) I cued up for the registration procedure. This time there were many known faces and I chatted a while with the other riders. I realised that I missed the requirement to bring a 1.2 m string to the registration. Errrr…..Another rider kindly gave me his second one, very kind indeed. I still had to pass the technical inspection (no probs) and to go for the odometer check. It is a 22 mile ride to assess the bias of the odometer and to calculate the milage correction factor. After this, I pulled some petrol, checked the tyre pressure and returned to my room.

Britain unfolded

Britain unfolded

Everything is prepared now, even the maps are unfolded on the bed to give a good overview for the planning. The 1.2 m string will play an important role…..hmmmm…I wonder where the rally master will send us. Now let’s have a shower and go down to the diner and the riders meeting where all the secrets will be unveiled. After that, everybody will rush back to the room to start the interesting planning, the base for a good rally.

Preparing for the Brit Butt Rally 2012

Last preparations for the BBR 2012 that starts on saturday 6 a.m.

Motorbike, gear, tools, technical gadgets….ticking off check lists. Hopefully I am better prepared than last year!

Tomorrow I’ll take the ferry from Zeebrugge to Hull. Friday evening is the Odometer check and the riders meeting. After that, the planning starts…