So this year I’m finally getting to play in the Mason-Dixon 20-20 Rally.
This was supposed to happen the last two years but things have tended to get in the way.
This will be my first (and hopefully not last) long distance/endurance rally.
If you’re not familiar with what that is, let me share with you what I know up to this point. First, we ride motorcycles. No we’re not you’re stereotypical leather clad Harley riders (though there are some Harley riders that do compete in some of these events and I’m not bashing them in any way). The difference though is, well, we actually ride. I think it would be fair to say that a typical weekend ride for what’s considered ‘normal’ folks is under a 100 miles on any given weekend. (Sure some ride further but that’s probably the average). Just look at all the low mileage used bikes for sale. The 98 ZX-11 that bought used in 2005 with 4500 miles on it comes to mind. I put 24k on that in 18 months, and even that pales in comparison to some of the miles people ride.
The MD 20-20 rally is a rally that benefits John Hopkins Childrens center, but unlike your ‘standard’ rallies or poker runs which are usually pretty short and often parade like. The 50 riders in this pack will turn in approx 60,000 ride miles in the weekend, about an average of about 1200 miles per rider. Some will do more, a lot more, others less.
The Rally starts in York, PA and runs through the Memorial Day weekend. The official rally start time is after the 4:30 am riders meeting on Saturday. You must return to York, PA no later than 2pm on Sunday or penalties start to get assessed. Certainly no later than 3pm in which case you’ll be time barred. (Roughly 32 hours of ride time).
At the start, we’ll be given a rally pack with 50+ bonus locations, each worth some amount of points, plus some new locations and a few twists will be thrown in. Each year the MD20-20 has a theme, this year it’s “A Quarter for your thoughts???. What this means is there are four bonus locations that are Quarters. They are not worth any points. But what they do get you is the ability to keep 25% of the points you collected for visiting other bonus locations.
Visit enough locations to collect 2000 points but only one quarter location and you only get to claim 500 points. Simple enough right?
Well not so fast. There is a mileage cap for the rally. 1776 miles to be exact.
There is also one mandatory bonus location, again not worth anything but if you don’t visit this site you are disqualified.
Last week we were given the coordinates for all of the bonus locations as well as their point values. What we don’t have are the details for each location, or what we have to do to claim it.
If one simply maps out the 4 quarters plus the mandatory location, we find the shortest route to be 1630 Miles, which is only 146 miles under the mileage cap. You lose 25 points for each mile over the cap, so that’s not so good.
This rally is full of Iron Butt Rally vets, and those tuning up to compete in the 11 day Iron Butt Rally for 07. I don’t expect to win anything. In fact it’s my goal just to finish and finish respectably as opposed to the DNF’s my buds turned in a couple years ago.
I can’t divulge my route or strategy at this time (as if it would really matter) but I expect to have a blast.
I’ll post again later with my results.