Big Things Practice Rally 10th-12th May 2019

SimonB

Premier Member
#22
OX, always willing to help out fellow riders, offered to run a rally to help the Aussies that are heading to the 2019 IBR prepare. When I saw OX’s post inviting other riders to attend also, I jumped at the opportunity.

Martin/Bec would attend in person and several other big dogs would do a virtual rally. I was in good company and planned to learn as much as I could.

OX did a lot of great work pulling everything together before the rally and even organised a photographer to follow us around in a dark coloured ute!

We had over 100 bonuses on offer, including an opportunity to explore the world’s largest solar system virtual drive based around Coonabarabran. Add to the mix checkpoints in Tamworth on Saturday and Sunday mornings with heavy penalties for being late and we were in for some fun.

It was great watching Martin and Bec work together. So impressive with their routing and execution. I take my hat off to anyone doing this as a two up team!

We could start anywhere by obtaining a printed receipt, but not before 18:30 on Friday afternoon. I left a cold, wet Canberra at about 17:30, bound for the Shell servo in Goulburn conveniently located right next to the Big Merino. How lucky was I? Start receipt and 1000 points just a stone’s throw from each other.

I continued down the Hume, through Sydney and onto the New England Highway picking up a few more bonuses on the way.

After a few hours’ sleep at Murrurundi I rode the short distance to Tamworth to have Leg 1 scored and commence routing for Leg 2.

The bonuses for the solar system drive looked complicated at first glance but after reading the rally book more carefully and starting to code locations and ‘combos’ into Basecamp, this option looked pretty attractive. Further, there were new roads to ride with the solar system option and that’s one of the many reasons I like rallying – seeing a few more of those out of the way places. With Leg 2 planned I headed west from Tamworth on the hunt for 22 locations.

Leg 2 finished on Sunday morning at 10:00am. Arriving late would cost me 1000 points per minute. I experienced this pain last rally, so I arrived early!

Leg 3 took me on a south westerly route through Yeoval, Grenfell and finally the Dog on the Tuckerbox in Gundagai. Quick photo and a finish receipt at the nearby servo then a chilly run up the Hume, onto the Barton Hwy back to Canberra.

A fantastic weekend. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to do these rides. Such a privilege.

Big thank you to OX and Tiger Bill for planning and to OX for running the rally and doubling as the official photographer!

A few photos to add to the album..

Start receipt- check
Big Merino for a 1000 points and a combo - check
Rain soaking my score sheet printed on an inkjet printer so the printing smudges (poor decision) - check.

Big Merino crop.jpg

Quick scramble up an embankment and here's Ploddy the Dinosaur

Big Dino crop.jpg


We all know this one, a favourite and worth 750 points

Big Dish crop.jpg


The pick in Grenfell

Big Pick crop.jpg

Part of the solar system drive. Note my aux lights are ready for the night run, searching for drop bears.

Big Saturn crop.jpg

Taken by the rally photographer.
Big sun no cloud crop.jpg



Cresting a rise on the Walcha-Kentucky Road. I just had to stop and grab a photo.

Big Sunrise - Kentucky crop copy.jpg
 

Tele

Premier Member
#25
Looks like a fun and challenging event. Congratulations to all those who "had a go". I could not even try the virtual rally due to the flood of relatives and guests we had here on the weekend for our daughters engagement bash. Big kudos to Ox and IBA Tiger for their energy and effort in putting this show together.

Thanks all who have posted such excellent photos.