Yesterday I was tired and cold so I didn’t write anything to update the blog. But nothing big happened where I was hanging. We got to Leonora around half past eleven and then we put up our tents and unloaded the truck.
Damien’s motor broke down so Magnus and Richie had to fix it while I got on tire and massage duty.
Annie’s hands were really sore and Damien’s neck was still stiff after his fall three days ago.
Today, since we will stay in Leonora for two nights, me, Megan, Tony, Eppis and Graham went out to see the riders in action. That was a cool and fun experience, except for the fly’s… I will NEVER complain about the swedish fly’s again, here you get them everywhere, in your mouth, eyes, ears, clothes… really everywhere. At least the swedish fly’s are well-behaved and respect you, sort of ;).
Garry had a bad fall of today, he broke his shoulder-blade and some ribs, so unfortunately he’s out of the competition now. Damien got a wooden stick in his leg, he was in pain but now after visiting the doctor he seems fine again and will still ride tomorrow in the final.
Tomorrow we’ll pack up all our stuff again and head for our final destination in the race, Kalgoorlie.
4 of us are kicking back in the camp today, Magnus, Murph, Kelvin and Andrew. Agnes, Tony Eppis and Megan has gone out to the track to get a view of the action out there.
As we are the biggest team in the race the officials walk by with info regarding the race and so far today this has happened:
Sam’s clutch has stopped working so he is out of todays stage. Damien has injured his leg or foot by a wooden stick, he is still riding though. Cyril Despres has a broken ankle so I believe this is it for him in this race…
At about 2 pm our riders begun to drop in, and today we lost 3 of them.
Garry, broken shoulder and a popped lung. Manuel was pulled off track by the medic as Manuel was somewhat “disillusioned” at the service stop and, as mentioned before, Sam had a broken clutch.
Service vise for me this night was light, just a general check (oil and filters) and a bent navigation tower and I was done.
Tonight is the last service we do on the bike and tomorrow we move on to Kalgoorlie. Load up and head back to Perth on Saturday morning after the presentation dinner Friday night.
This is possibly my last update on this race as I am not sure if I will have time tomorrow so thanks for following it.
I also would like to thank Damien for letting me work on his bike, this was the first time I have worked with a rider at Damien’s level.
Special thanks to Garry who asked me to come yet again and for accepting Agnes on the team.
Laverton to Leonora.
Only a fuel stop today. The first stage up to the fuel stop where Richie, Murph, Kelvin, Andrew and me went turned out to be a carnage. At the fuel stop we can only assist the riders with food and fuel no service on the bikes are allowed.
Sam was first to this stop. His navigation tower had cracked all the way through on one side so it was flapping back and fwd as he rode the bike. He did a quick fix with cable ties which turned out to last him the day, none of us believed it would ;).
We received reports that Manuel had a big crash and he was heli lifted out of the stage.
As Damien came up to the position where Manuel crashed Manuel was basically knocked out and the blood was running from his nose so Damien called for a helicopter. Manuel turned out to be quite ok given the circumstances and he will be riding tomorrow again…
Then Ben got in to the fuel stop. Ben had problems with a motor that was leaking cooling liquid, as we could not touch the bike (race rules) we could only give him advice, more water and a good luck.
Garry had a fall at the exact same spot as Manuel and broke his navigation tower so he had to find another rider to follow back to the finish.
When we got back to the camp round 3 pm a few of our bikes was already there and the work had begun as we arrived. I got the news that Damien’s motor broke down at the end of the stage. Mick stopped and towed him back and the motor needed to be replaced.
Big day for the team but I believe we will have all our riders back on the track tomorrow.
Agnes sends her regards and saying that she’s to tired this evening to write anything, but she’ll be back tomorrow 😉 … so to be continued.
Our riders had a loop to do today, Laverton to Laverton.
Two crews had to go out. One fuel stop crew had to drive 80 km at 6 am in order to be on time. The second crew was the service crew, they had to cover the double distance 160 km one way.
I was on the service crew and we came to the service place 2 mins before the riders.
Since I didn’t have to put up the tents today I followed the mechanic crew (fuel and service) out to help the riders on their way. I couldn’t go with any of our crews because there wasnt any seat left for me so Damien’s friends let me go with them.
Big drive for the service crews, our four vehicles had three different destinations.
- 120 Km drive to the Service stop
- 300 Km drive to the fuel stop
- The direct drive to this stop, Leonora
I went to the first service stop and when all bikes was through we had another 250 km drive…
At the service stop the riders had a 20 min service opportunity. Damien did the fastest overall time so far to this stop and it showed on his rear tire. The tire was basically totally finished, he got a new one fitted. unfortunately Damien’s electric road book broke after the service stop so he had to wind the pages by hand which in turn made him crash at about 100 Km/hour.
The service crew got in about 20 min to Leonora before Damien and he was beat…
I got the problems on the road book sorted, a wire that had vibrated loose was the cause of the problem.
Today I got up and put all the tents together and then we left for Liverton where we will stay for two nights (thank heaven I don’t have to fix with the tents tomorrow!!). So tomorrow I will follow the mechanics out to the fuel stop to see what that’s all about.
The service crew had 80+80 km to drive, the first service stop was at 80 km, next overnight stop another 80 away in Sandstone… the population must be like 3 hoses and a cheep….
Todays stage is the fastest of the seven days, all our riders got through and no major issues tonight on the bikes.
Breaks, tires, bolt check…
Today when we got to the next stop I tried to put up the tents. But it was so windy that the tents flew away in different directions, even though I put some bags in them. So I had a hard time struggling with them. The guys here are really nice and they joke around a lot.
Evening day one
A big day for most of the mechanics, after loosing 2 riders during day one. Sam that hit a kangaroo and had a bad fall was stopped by the medics to continue after the service. Manuel’s rear tire basically exploded and had to ride on his rim for a number of Km. Manuel are back in the track today, however his chances of getting a good position are slim.
Magnus taught me how to put together the pop-up tents, so now I’m in charge of all the tents here ;).
When I said a kangaroo was probably the thing I wanted to see the most we tried to find some, and we did…. three dead ones along the road :(. I talked to Sam later about the kangaroos and he said he wished the one he met had been dead too (the one that hit him).