Day 243 – King of the Hammers T-5

photoKing of the Motos ran today, oh my gosh, that was brutal.  We watched on the Jumbotron as these guys worked and worked to get over the rock passes.  Congratulations to all of the competitors, whether you finished or not – you deserve a What A Stud!  It is tough enough to watch the four wheel drive buggies go through. But to watch the moto riders have to heave their bikes through it, it was as much upper body strength as anything.

In theory, we only have 88 teams left to register for the rest of the races, but the lines have been out the door for two solid days as we deal with all the pit passes that are being purchased.  I’m tired, we’ve been working hard and smiling through it.  I love being a smiling face, especially for the new drivers.  The ones where this is their first experience at the big event, they all seem a little dazed and confused at the hype and hoopla, I like to be able to ease them through that.  You remember what it was like your first time, well, it’s just like that for a bunch of these guys.

We’ve seen a lot of our friends, which is the best part, in fact, the only reason we do things like this.  I can’t count the number of times we’ve been congratulated on our marriage and thanked for Christmas cards sent.  So far we’ve had the following things brought for us, avocados, bananas, Vodka, a potato and a great photo.  It is great to see people.

Saturday night I got to do something new…Mustard Dog gave me a Chinese Lantern to light and send off.  I was like a kid in a candy store.  Lujan and I did it together and we were supposed to make a wish as we sent it floating upwards.  Of course, by the time it was on its’ way, the only thing I was wishing was that it would rise higher and not light the tents on fire.  We had already burned a hole in the side of the lantern, so we weren’t sure we would be successful, but we were.  Two lanterns flew at the same time and lit up the blackest of nights out here on the desert floor.  It was awesome.

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Day 245 – King of the Hammers T-7

Seventy-four drivers were registered on this first day of the official race week.  The Main Event is next Friday, in between now and then there are several other events taking place.  The King of the Motos will go off on Sunday, there are forty-five teams registered for that, most of them Pros.  Names that if I was up on motorcycle racing, I probably would recognize.

On Tuesday and Wednesday will be the Last Chance Qualifier, or LCQ.  This event has sixty drivers entered, it’s a short course with a lot at stake.  The top ten drivers with the best times get to be part of the main event, the rest go home.

Thursday sees the Everyman Challenge, or EMC.  I haven’t looked at how many drivers are registered for this one.  These are the stock rigs, the trail rigs that have been modified to meet the safety requirements for racing in a race as tough as this one.

Friday is the main event, KOH, King of the Hammers, this is the daddy of all four-wheel drive races, to some it qualifies as one of the top ten hardest races in the world for any type of motorsport.  On a league with Dakar and the Baja 1000.  There will be 110 entries to this race, one hundred that have spent the year qualifying for the race and the ten that transfer from LCQ.

There are two trails, Backdoor and Chocolate Thunder that will have full recovery teams standing by to help them right themselves and get out of the way should they have trouble.  When we pre-ran the other day, we had our own little trouble on trails that weren’t anywhere close to as hard as the ones needing full time recovery crews.

Before the races begin, I will spend my time making sure the process for the drivers is easy.  That all of the questions get answered, that everyone is happy, then I’ll spend sometime at the campfire listening to their stories, so looking forward to that.