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Thread: SADDLE SORE 1600k success Chennai-Vizag-Chennai

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    Addicted floydanubhav's Avatar
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    Default SADDLE SORE 1600k success Chennai-Vizag-Chennai

    It has been 3 weeks since my Saddle Sore success. Still have a slight numbness in my fingers which the doctor attributes to oedema but well I guess what finally spurred me to write this travelogue was the emotional parting with my 220 DTSi yesterday. For those who are wondering why I sold it, the next few sentences will answer that question. I am a Masters student in Hamburg, Germany and I was selected to write my 6 month Master Thesis with Daimler India Commercial Vehicles Pvt. Ltd. , Chennai (Not Dinamalar the local tamil newspaper or Dalmiar. There are a few more funny names I have heard when I have called people from the office trying to explain where I am calling from. But have always managed to finally get through using Daimler's biggest brand MERCEDES BENZ). Since the office was pretty far and there was thankfully no transport from the company's side, I decided to get a bike. Now I don't like 2nd hand bikes because I have seen very few people maintaining their bikes well and I didn't want to end up buying a lemon. Having owned a P180 classic for 6 years I have been in love with the Pulsar lineage and it was no surprise when I booked the P220 DTSi.

    I knew my relationship with my bike was short term since I had no plans of coming back to India after my Thesis. Into the second month of my internship at Daimler, I happened to meet Ranga, a friend from Daimler Germany who had recently shifted to the Indian office and we immediately struck a new chord thanks to the P220. We both had the new Plasma Blue 220 DTSi. We started with our short speed runs on the National Highways, taking the long route to the office just to enjoy the P220s excellent riding experience. But we still felt that this bike was begging for more. When Ranga told me about the Iron Butt Association and the Saddle Sore I got immediately excited and with a little research we immediately decided the best route was to Vizag and back since the GQ from Chennai till there is 100% complete. We kept putting off the run due to political instability in the state. As time rolled on and January came, we decided it was futile to ride into Andhra and decided to do the Chennai –Belgaum-Chennai stretch fully aware that the GQ was horrible in between. But we weren't left with much of a choice. We plotted our route and double checked the distance on mapmyindia and google maps. But we also made Plan B just in case Andhra returned to stability and that was a good choice. In calendar week 2 the central government starts finally responding and things in Andhra settle down. We decided that this was it. Before the central government or the political parties in Andhra goofed up again, we decided to do the run. So on the 6th of January we had made our decision. We needed to service our bikes and with a little sweet talk at PBK we got it done on Thursday and Friday. We both are absolute fans of Motul 300V and we were confident the oil, which was already about 2500 kms old in my engine and new in his engine would hold up for the entire trip. Everytime I service my bike it invariably rains even if there has been no sign of rain for ages. With the weather deteriorating on Friday, we were in a fix. But we knew this was the only weekend possible for me because of my tight schedule. I researched in detail on the weather forecast and looked up satellite images on the internet and there was a 40% chance of rain in the morning till vijayawada (400 kms from Chennai) and 20% chance on the return trip. I have to really thank my dad because he volunteered to sign the witness forms (I still find it hard to believe that he was ok with his only child doing an insane bike trip. Mom begged to differ but dad said he would take care of the situation).

    On the 9th of January 2010 at 03:00 hours with our witness forms signed we headed out to the BP COCO outlet in Mogappair, Chennai. We had topped up on Nitrogen the night before (I have seen this do wonders to the tyres of my dad's car) filled our tanks to the brim, wore our riding gear, tied down our back packs and were good to go at 03:13 am. We had set ourselves a target of completing the Saddle Sore 2000k. We hit the GQ in about 5 mins and opened throttle. After the first half hour our confidence levels were high and with the 220s stupendous headlight setup we maintained speeds of more than 100 kmph comfortably. With no sign of rain I was beginning to grin to myself that ALL IZZ WELL. But all that changed in seconds. With a heavy drizzle our speeds slowed down and after riding more than 2 hours in the rain we decide to pull into the shelter of a fuel station. I think this was somewhere after Nellore. I checked the trip meter and realised we had done 200 kms in 3 hours. By now we were soaking wet with water pumping out of our shoes with every step. We looked at each other and Ranga said well the sun is going to come out anytime and let’s ride on further to see if the weather improves. After another short stint in rain that seemed to have abated, we were greeted by sun rise. The rain stopped and with the light of dawn we gunned our P220s at full throttle, zipping by small towns, passerbys and cars.

    Around 380 kms into the trip on the oustskirts of Guntur Ranga flashed his lights at me and I let him ride by my side. He said his vehicle had hit reserve. I checked my fuel meter and saw I had probably a litre or two before I hit reserve but we decided to pull over at the next fuel station . We topped up our tanks and paid the bill at 08:18 am. I did the math in my head and we had averaged (386 kms) almost 100 kmph in the last 2 hours. I started feeling at this rate we could do the 2000k (Plan was to head towards Trichy from Chennai if we had time after 1600k). We took bio breaks at the fuel station and gulped down our first bar of chocolate and a can of red bull. Put our gear back on and headed out.

    Now we were still drenched and the bikes looked unhygenic , but we were starting to dry off and the sky was getting clearer. On the outskirts of Vijayawada, some MORON almost ended our run. Thanks to the 220s excellent braking and a Stoppie from yours truly nothing happened. There was a cop who immediately took the nincompoop aside and since we weren't at fault, asked us to proceed. With time wasted, I started thinking of the situation we were in. We were in a race against time and I guess that’s what makes the IBA rides so much fun. With a few bio breaks thanks to the chills from our wet clothes, we managed to reach the outskirts of Vizag district covering a total of 766 kms at 01:32 pm. munching down chocolate and red bull we rode on till the U turn point outside Vizag at the AIR station (850 kms total). we collected our fuel bill and an ATM time stamp for additional proof and were good to go at 02:45 pm. I forgot to mention that we stopped every 500 kms to lube our chains with Motul chain lube.

    Me and Ranga looked at each other and the same thought was racing through our heads it was impossible now to do the 2000k thanks to the weather. We had about 3 hours of sunlight and probable rain after Vijayawada. But we were determined to finish this ride and succeed. We headed out on the return leg and covered about 200 kms in the first two hours stopping for a quick rest at the end of the 2 hours to stretch and have some SP tea and banana.

    Now blame our stars because when we were ready to head out rain greeted us. After 30 mins of rain I was close to tears and was hoping and praying that things would get better. We managed only 50 kms in the 3rd hour of our return leg. We were running into a lot of traffic. Once the skies cleared we were blessed with a Tata Safari that was doing good speed and we decided to tail him maintaining a safe distance. What is worth mentioning is me and Ranga both have similar riding styles and we are not rash drivers who cut through traffic. We are sane riders who ride at high speed only if it is safe and I guess thats partly the reason we didn't get into major trouble with the moron on the outskirts of Vijayawada. This helped hugely and we were sad to see him turn off in Vijayawada. We stopped for fuel on the outskirts of Guntur and realised we had 6 hours and 400 kms to go. We could make it if the ride was uneventful was my thought.

    We drove on and narrowed down the margin to 210 kms in 3 hours. At 00:30 am we were exhausted, sleepy and fog was starting to form. We decided to take a short break and stretch. Our eyelids felt like weights. We finished off the chocolate and hydrated ourselves. At this point I was unsure of what Ranga's thoughts were. I asked him if he was fine and if we should go on. He looked at me and said the most inspirational sentence anyone's ever told me : "Winners don't quit and quitters don't win". The short break and fresh air does wonders to a tired soul.

    When we set off again, we were slapped out of any remaining exhaustion by a Volvo bus speeding on our side of the road due to construction work. The bus driver was an absolute maniac. We made good time after that and checked the clock with one hour to go and 60 kms left. The visors started to fog now and we rode the last hour with the visors up (My eyes were red for a whole day after the ride thanks to that but just because of the dust on Indian roads). It was a dramatic finish in the end. 1700 kms (1652 kms according to google maps) with 2 minutes left on the clock. We were exhausted to the end that we didn't celebrate our victory. We headed to my place and got our end witness forms signed by dad.

    Mom was relieved to see her son back in one shape. Ranga headed home after that. I took a quick hot shower and ate the most tasty bowl of curd rice with pickle in my whole life. At 04:00 am in the morning I was in bed. I woke up and realised the time was 08:00. Thinking I had slept through the day I walked outside the bedroom to realise I had slept only 4 hours. My parents were proud but told me if I tried anything close to this ever again they would not approve of it . The phone calls and messages enquiring about my trip started coming in and the feeling of success started sinking in. I went out with mom and dad for dinner to celebrate my success and remember talkin to Ranga in the evening. We were both beaming at the office the next day and I guess we can proudly say (from the list on the IBA) that we were the first Indians to successfully do a group Saddle Sore.

    A few pics from the ride . I have the entire set with pics of the bills with the speedo and some other arbit pics on my facebook profile. Send me an invite on facebook and i'll add you xbhpians. Till then I wish anybody who wants to try the Saddle Sore all the best. People might say it is impossible but from my experience I would like to say. When the going gets tough the tough get going

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    Last edited by floydanubhav; 05-23-2010 at 11:27 PM.

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    Topic Approved.

    Congratulations on completing the 1600k Saddle Sore ride! I started reading your trip-log, and by the time I was somewhere in the middle of the log, I lost it. Please format the article properly so that we all can enjoy the log properly.

    Also, do mention the details about how to go about doing a saddle-sore. Also, I would like to know whether you both got any kind of recognition (certificates) from the Saddle Sore Association for completing the same.

    P.S: If it's not a hassle, someone like me would also like to know what is the criteria, et al for doing a saddle sore, like, how many kilometres (minimum) should be completed in a stipulated time to call it a "saddle sore" ride.

    Thanks.
    ...in search of that perfect world - My Travel Blog :)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aryan View Post
    Topic Approved.

    Congratulations on completing the 1600k Saddle Sore ride! I started reading your trip-log, and by the time I was somewhere in the middle of the log, I lost it. Please format the article properly so that we all can enjoy the log properly.

    Also, do mention the details about how to go about doing a saddle-sore. Also, I would like to know whether you both got any kind of recognition (certificates) from the Saddle Sore Association for completing the same.

    P.S: If it's not a hassle, someone like me would also like to know what is the criteria, et al for doing a saddle sore, like, how many kilometres (minimum) should be completed in a stipulated time to call it a "saddle sore" ride.

    Thanks.
    Sorry for the endless text . I copied and pasted the text from notepad and didn't realise it might not look right on the thread.

    We sent an email to Michael Kneebone of the Iron Butt Association with all the documents. He congratulated us on our great ride and said the certification would take several weeks and he would send us an email once the certificates were ready.

    The details on the Saddle Sore requirements and etc. will be posted in a new reply shortly

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    Congratulations on successful completion of saddlesore. Bravo!!
    HH Karizma (Current) || CBF Stunner PGM-FI || Honda CB Unicorn Dazzler
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    great feat of achievement there man!!! congrats!


    My offerings to the gods of speed -

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    Quote Originally Posted by floydanubhav View Post
    We sent an email to Michael Kneebone of the Iron Butt Association with all the documents. He congratulated us on our great ride and said the certification would take several weeks and he would send us an email once the certificates were ready.
    That's good to know. Would LOVE to have a look at the certificate when you guys do receive it. This is something to be proud of.

    Quote Originally Posted by floydanubhav View Post
    The details on the Saddle Sore requirements and etc. will be posted in a new reply shortly
    I am awaiting the details.
    ...in search of that perfect world - My Travel Blog :)

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    Default Saddle Sore

    Saddle Sore rides are endurance rides certified by the Iron Butt Association. You can read up on the association and the various rides they offer on www.ironbutt.com

    I will be detailing what one needs to do to successfully complete a Saddle Sore and the best way to document your ride. I followed the same method that Deepak Dongre, the second Indian to do a Saddle Sore 1600k. I spoke to him a day before leaving.

    The various Saddle Sore rides are :

    1. Saddle Sore 1600k - 1610 kms in 24 hours
    2. Saddle Sore 2000k - 2000 kms in 24 hours
    3. Bun Burner 2500k - 2500 kms in 36 hours
    4. Bun Burner Gold - 2500 kms in 24 hours

    To do the Bun Burner Gold you need to have completed one of the rides from 1 to 3 succesfully before. There are many more rides. Check them out on the website

    It is not enough to cover the distance on your odometer alone as from personal experince the P220 odo has an error of 3% . We did 1700 kms which on mapping programs (the Iron butt Associaition uses maps to verify your distance covered) came to 1652 kms.

    The instructions below are more India specific

    The best route is a 4 lane national Highway such as the Golden Quadrilateral as you can drive fast for long distacnes and be rest assured there is very little oncoming traffic. You can chose to do the ride from A to B which is 1600 kms or 2000 kms or 2500 kms away or break your ride into a return trip travelling from A to B to A . so B would be your mid point and half the distance of the ride you plan on taking. this is a good option because you end up home at the end of the ride.

    To plan and calculate your distance you can use either google maps or map my india. Now with your route planned. what you need to find and which is very important is a start witness and an end witness who is not with you on the ride. This witness can be the same person if your start and end point are the same. Anybody can be your witness. Even the fuel bunk attendant. Just remember he has to be able to speak english because the IBA will call them to verify their witness accounts. You will find the witness forms on the IBA website.

    With your start witness form signed, find the nearest gas station (IBA prefers this) or ATM where you can get a time stamp. It is very important that this a computer generated receipt with the date and time clearly printed on it. This will be your official start time. You basically have 24 hours or 36 hours to finish your IBA ride.

    On the way at each refueling point (maximum 600 kms distance between two fuel stops) remember to collect a date stamp. the time is not required by the IBA but just a receipt with your vehicle number and date is good. If you are doing a A to B to A ride then remeber to collect a date stamp at the U turn point from a fuel station or ATM. At the end of the ride get a time stamp just like the start of your ride and get a witness to sign your ride end form. Make a travel log with your odometer readings at each fuel stop.

    we wanted to send substantial proof by taking a time stamp using credit card payments at each fuel station or ATM receipts on the way. We also took pictures of the fuel bills with the odometer at each fuel station.

    Once your ride is done submit your documentation to the IBA by email or post. The documentaton includes:

    1. application form from the IBA website
    2. a map with your route charted out and your fuel stops.
    3. a trip log as per the IBA requirements. you will find an example form for this on the website
    4. copies of your fuel bills. they do not need the originals
    5. witness forms

    The IBA is an organisation with volunteers so the verification and certification takes ages. Once you have submitted your documents wait for your certificate
    Last edited by floydanubhav; 01-31-2010 at 12:44 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ravi@17bhp View Post
    Congratulations on successful completion of saddlesore. Bravo!!
    Quote Originally Posted by jd666 View Post
    great feat of achievement there man!!! congrats!
    Thanks guys

    Quote Originally Posted by Aryan View Post
    That's good to know. Would LOVE to have a look at the certificate when you guys do receive it. This is something to be proud of.

    I am awaiting the details.
    This has been my poudest achievement . Even though my 220 is gone I will still continue to follow xbhp and the ownership thread. I have got in touch with BAJAJ. The digital media manager is supposed to contact us sometime soon. Working in the automotive industry gets you easy contacts .

    Will put up a pic of the certificate once we have it. Deepak Dongre said his took almost 6 months

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    great rip man!!! bet you had best adventure of your life..

    and truly said.. "when the going gets tough, the tough gets going.. "

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nitin_traveller View Post
    great rip man!!! bet you had best adventure of your life..

    and truly said.. "when the going gets tough, the tough gets going.. "
    Yup buddy. had a great time

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