Recommendations for Rookies


Premier Member
IBR Finisher
OK, the kids are getting self sufficient, and I'm looking to get a explore endurance rallies for the first time. I've been riding for years, but never anything competitive. I have browsed the events listed on the homepage, and the listing on Jason's website.

Surely (yes I called you that!), someone can recommend a few that are good one's for the novice. Being geographically convenient would be a great help too. So points to ones closer me.


Ron Messick, Independence, MO IBA#598
Premier Member
IBR Finisher
I second Brians recommendation of Team Strange events. Another in the area, Glacial Lakes Motorcycle Club.

Team Strange;
Minnesota 1000, 24 Hour Rally, June 2017, Lakeville, MN
Team Lyle MN, 8 Hour Rally, TBA Maybe?

Bonzai Road Rally, 10 Hour Rally, Late May 2017, LaCrosse, WI
Buffalo Road Rally, 11 Hour Rally, Early Sept 2017, Sioux City, SD
Harevest Rally, 12 Hour Rally, Early Oct 2017, Hutchinson, MN


Premier Member
IBR Finisher
Lew, I've run the Void, Mason Dixon 2020, Butt Lite VII, and the IBR. Also participate in the Tour of Honor and did the Big Money Rally a few times.

What I can say each rally is different. With some rally masters I have gotten fairly good at seeing a winning route and with others I haven't a clue. All have been quality and you will find many of the same people at each.
I strongly suggest you participate in as many as you can since you will learn something at each.

I also suggest you participate in one of the other "challenges" like the Tour of Honor, Big Money Rally, or one of the others. Team Strange has one each year with a different theme. These can serve two purposes. 1) to get you out on the road with a destination or reason to ride. 2) You can run them like a rally for practice. Build a route that is 24-30 hours and ride it like you would a rally trying to be as efficient as possible and practice your technique for taking photos, where to store your flag, how to use your camera in different light conditions, etc. It is not the same as truly being under the gun of being on a clock but it is a close approximation and helps refine your process so it is repeatable. Most errors come when you do something different such as put your flag and/or camera in a different place.

If you want to chat over the phone I'd be happy to do so, just let me know. I'm always willing to mentor a new rallier


Premier Member
IBR Finisher
Thanks for all the input folks!

Chris, I appreciate your offer, and will likely take you up on it at some point.

Right now, I'm in the middle of updating my ride, after considering and trying several different models, such as FJR, Super Ten, Connie, Sportster, and the new big Yamaha, I have decided to continue with what I know, a new Ultra Limited. I'll also trim my garage from three bikes to two, eliminating the sportster.

After that, I will continue with mounting my aux tank, and figure out a more robust hydration system. Kevin has given me some great pics of his set up, so I shouldn't have to much to figure out on my own.

I currently plan to do the UCC next summer, as well as sneaking in a few rallies. I had to rule out the BL already, but I will probably try some smaller ones. If, by some miracle (or catastrophe?) I get selected for IBR, I will probably scrap the UCC and get into as many smaller rallies as possible. I'll jump off of that bridge when I get to it though.


Premier Member
Is there an updated list of rallies recommended for beginners Id like to do as many as I can fit in in the upcoming (2019) season
The list a few posts above is still applicable. I highly recommend the Big Money Rally. It can be done anywhere in the country, and you can start to build up experience with reading clues, creating routes, taking and submitting pics, etc.
I'll be riding in the HW3 rally this year (2019) as my first rally. I've been practicing with Tour of Honor and managed to get the first place trophy for my state by running the first 48 hours like a rally. For 2019 I'll be running ToH like a rally for a few days, until I get at least two states done. Besides being good practice, it's a great event to be part of and supports some great charities.
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