Some of you may have noticed my blog posts have been rather lacking lately...but, as alway's, there is a reason. I've been in Alice Springs supporting my husband as he rode in the 2008 Tattersall's Finke Desert Race.
For those of you who have never heard of this race before, it's an endurance race where riders (or drivers for vehicles) traverse a gruelling 480km desert track between Alice Springs and the Finke community (in the Northern Territory - Australia), then back to Alice Springs again. The race takes place over two day's and each competitor has a maximum of 4 hours to complete the course.
Over 500 riders competed, and it's an honour just to complete the course within time with no (0r only minor) injuries. Unfortunately this year many had serious injuries and one man died in their efforts to complete the race. Thankfully, Jason (my husband) completed within time the course and his injuries were a sore rear end and some blisters on his hands. Not suprising considering the rain on day 1 and the heat on day 2.
Here's Jas about to start the race on day 1:
He's in the middle wearing the red gear with the blue helmet - looking very serious as he's about to start the hardest dirt enduro race he's ever done in his life. This was taken at the Alice Springs start line. I stayed in Alice Springs with my eldest and youngest children awaiting Jason's return to Alice the following day. Jas met his parents and my middle child at Finke and they helped him there with bike maintenance etc.
Below is Jas at the finish line at Alice Springs on Day 2 of the race:The reason we had to have two crews is because to drive from Alice to Finke takes 4.5 to 5 hours on the roads. To ride it on the track takes between 2.5 and 4 hours as it's a short cut through the desert. So, for Jas to have help both ends waiting for him, this was the cheaper solution as we can't afford a jet...LOL!
I think it was very satisfying for him, as this is one of the things Jas has always wanted to do. His goal this year (as it was the first time he's competed in this race) was to finish and obtain his 'survivor' award. Overall, he came 28th in his class (Class 6 for 250CC bikes - which is a small engined bike) and 280th in the entire race. He plans to improve on this in 2010.