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OER (East Europe Rally) 2010

Älg-Rally 2010 goes East, not North

At our winter planning session in a small hotel in the Ardennes, with ample good food and belgian beers at hand, we decided in a temporary mood of insanity to try something new and silly. (At least the silly part remains a constant factor). Anyway, after all the years up North and Snow we have set our sights on mud, sand and rocks....after our "stage" in Portugal in 2009 (see below) we recognised that there is mucho fun to be had off road in Europe, and we registered for participation to the East Europe Rally . We did some preparation for that. Lex, Maarten, Frans-Jan and Mark have registered and bought suitable bikes, tripy, gps and abundant spare parts (resp Suzuki DR350, GS650 in full rally trim, KTM EXC520, KTM EXC 400..). A very wet and muddy practice weekend in Ardennes has been absolved end of March 2010 - and a sunnier one in April - see footage below - btw only film out of 10 that actually was recorded - we now know how the camera works....).

Now, June 2010 we have actually done the OER rally. The rally was way more intense versus what we expected, mainly due to the abundance of presence of water on the track and coming in from above. Lex his famous statement has become; "This will not become an enjoyable day". So we had to do long days of 10 to 12 hours driving, after repairs a few beer, dinner and 6 hours of sleep. We also have to find out that bikes in general and KTM especially wear parts under these conditions like we change underwear. The list of things to be repaired or replaced: many brakepads, front wheel bearings, oil seals of front fork, sprockets, brake lever, lost an exhaust, license plate lost, multiple rear end bolts lost due to vibrations, flat tire, broken spoke, jiffy broken off, oil changes, goggles not coping with rain, blue hands due to gloves with weird behaviour in wet conditions, rainsuits being "eaten" by off-roading, ripping securing straps off small back mounted tool bag. Impression of the rally can be found below ! Enjoy.