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Rally Report 2017 - Alpenbutt Rally

Rally Report 2017

This is a transcription of the daily rally master’s bulletins during the rally.

28 Jul 2017, day-2:


During Friday, more and more riders have reached the rally HQ. They left behind masses of rain and millions of cars stuck in the summer vacation traffic jam. in the parking lot of the rally hotel, bikes with many different number plates gathered. From 4 p.m. onwards, they had the chance to the early registration on day-1. About half of the riders made use of it already.

In the meantime, the rally team gathered and started its work. Many boxes needed to be emptied and the various starter and rally packs needed to be prepared. A massive reception desk in the entrance lobby of the hotel welcomes the riders where they have to go through the various steps before they can call themselves registered for the toughest long-distance motorcycle rally in Europe. The atmosphere is filled with happy anticipation.

In the evening, the rally master invited the riders for a little party at his house near the hotel. Over 40 people, riders and rally team, got together, tasting local beers and a Bavarian Brotzeit and had the opportunity to meet each other the last time in a relaxing atmosphere. The crowd was so big that more food needed to be ordered. Even the sun found the way to this place which made this a nice opportunity to meet and greet known and unknown fellow riders.

On Saturday, riders will have to join the rookie and riders meetings before they get all the information to start their planning for this massive objective that will be ahead of them next week. Weather forecasts are somewhat mixed, they range from passing rain fronts to soaring heat in Northern Italy. This sounds interesting.

29 Jul 2017, day-1:


Registration continued on 10 a.m. The second half of the rider pack checked in on Saturday until 4 p.m. Most of the process went relatively smooth, but considering the high number of rookies, some last-minute dramas were unavoidable. Some rider thought being part of a team would strip him from the duty to have a camera and take his own pictures. Well no, mate. Buy yourself a camera and you’re in! Another arrived without camera nor laptop and, when realising the problem, wanted to pull out. We convinced him to get a camera and to give it at least a try. Another rider from Italy wanted to skip the mandatory rookie and rider meeting because he needed to pick up his wife in Innsbruck. We made it clear that the rules required him to be present. His wife had to fight her way through the Austrian and German railway system all alone and finally she arrived in Miesbach.

Some checks in the parking lot revealed that the riders listened well the rally master’s advice to show up with new tyres and brakes.

The rally tam worked like an oiled machine: Gerhard, Dave, Rüdiger, Thomas and Katharina assisted in many important tasks such as taking care of the registration, checking the rider cameras, filming the event and answering many questions from the participants.

Finally, the rookie meeting started at 4 p.m. In 50 minutes, basic rally principles were explained and many questions were answered. Interestingly, many veterans joined also the meeting.

The rider meeting for everyone started at 5 p.m. and the rally master explained many general and specific features of this rally. A gasp went through the crowd then he presented an overview of all waypoints in this rally:

There where three main objectives of this rally defined by him: stay safe and ride responsibly, have fun and document your mandatory rest breaks. Riders have to document a rest break of at least 5 hours every night. There are incentives to extend it up to 8 hours and to stay in hotels. The main aim is that the riders get maximum rest. The will leave between 6 and 7 a.m. on Sunday morning when ever they want and have to get to the checkpoint hotel in Trento by Monday evening. In the meantime, they have the opportunity to visit many places and to do combos. This is the essence of this rally: lots of combos. Actually, riders have to claim at least one combo during leg 1. Should be easy, as there are so many of them, from easy to challenging.

A new system of difficulty levels for alpine roads was presented, also with videos. Riders felt relieved that the highest level 5 will not be found in the rally. In the end, the riders received with the rally packages with the rally book. At 8 p.m., the meeting was finally finished (it had been interrupted by the dinner) and the riders went to their rooms to plan their ride for the next two days.

Riders receive extra points when they fill in a fuel log or share a GPS tracker link with the rally team. In addition, a public Spotwalla page has been set up where you can see the last locations of the riders who want to share their location.

30 Jul 2017, day 1:

Allegro, ma non troppo

The starting window opened at 6 a.m. After some no-shows and last-minute cancellations, 64 participants on 62 bikes started the rally this morning in Miesbach in Upper Bavaria. They could start their trip of a lifetime anytime between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m. A few riders were leaving as soon as possible, with ambition in their eyes. However, leg 1 has the same length for everyone, after 36 hours the riders have to arrive at the checkpoint hotel in Trento, Italy. The distance is very short, but the riders have a large selection of bonus points to select from.

Bonus point locations, Leg 1.

It was interesting to see that most of the participants took it easy; they followed the orders of Robert the rally master who had told them that this was his home town and that they have to BEHAVE when leaving the town. The start went very smooth and after 7 a.m. there were only few riders who has not left yet. In this case, the clock was already ticking for them. After the last odometer reading was noted down, the whole rally team had a large breakfast in the rally HQ before their ways separated.

Start of the rally, 6 a.m.

Rüdiger, who is going in the car, was nominated to be the rally team member who should be in the picture of a timed bonus today. On every day of the rally, there will be a bonus point where riders will get extra points when they take a picture of themselves with a member of the rally team. On this first day, the location was on top of the Edelweissspitze, a summit of the Grossglockner Pass at 2500 m. It is a very scenic place with a 360 degree panoramic view. The time window was from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. If a rider was late, he still gets the normal 1500 points, but with the „meet the rally team“ extra points, the place was worth a 2500 points. Quite a lot.

While the rally team members Thomas and Katharina went to Italy on their own, the other members Robert, Dave and Gerhard rode on their own bikes towards the Grossglockner. The ride was very relaxed, only disturbed by an attempt of a German tourist to take the rally master out of the rally: the car indicated to turn left, started to turn – and then decided to make a sharp turn to the right, where Robert was about to pass the car. An emergency braking combined with an evading movement saved him by a few millimetres. The driver rightfully deserved the subtle Bavarian curses that were yelled at him.

When approaching the Grossglockner Road, the rain started again and at the turn to the Edelweisspitze, the rain got so dense that rally team decided to have a coffee break in a hut where they also met some riders who were a bit early and did not want to wait on the top until 12 p.m. The road to the top is short, winding, steep, and full of cobble stones. The combination with cold rain makes it an interesting ride. On the top, Rüdiger was ready to be in the picture of the summit sign.

Meet the rally team: if you take a picture with a member of the rally team, you get another 1000 points. Meeting time: Sunday noon, 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. The Grossglockner Road can be accessed between 5 a.m. and 8:45 p.m.

It was a surprise to see that within the next hour, many riders showed up. This photo bonus concept was intended for the more unexperienced riders who have a more touristic approach and still want to make some points. However, also top-notch riders showed up, among them Ironbutt Rally Finishers such as John Young, Giel Kerkhof and Steve Eversfield.

View from the Edelweissspitze on the Grossglockner Road.

When riding south, the weather soon improved and soon it got really hot. The rally team rider decided to ride directly to the checkpoint hotel where the riders have to arrive on Monday evening. It was surprising to see that three riders had checked in this hotel as well; maybe a clever move, for they had secured their rest break documentation, they do not ride with a lot of luggage tomorrow and they have already checked in their room in the checkpoint hotel.

It was stressed very clearly during the riders meeting, that the documentation of the mandatory rest breaks can be challenging in the Alps and that this required major attention. The spotwalla links of the riders who provided them showed that most riders took this advice serious; now at the time of the opening of the starting time window of the five hour rest break, they are mostly in the vicinity of larger cities. There is an incentive (extra points) to extend the rest breaks up to eight hours and to provide a bill of a hotel. This should assure that the riders will be riding in a safe zone, as the physical and mental exhaustion is much higher than in a rally in the lowlands and with very few winding roads.

The last known location of riders is indicated and it is really fun to watch how this thing evolves. The rally master also has access to the individual GPS tracks and this is really big entertainment. Some riders give a surprise, such as Petri Myntti from Finland who directly went down to the Garda Lake and the Trentino area. Apparently, he is after the big „War and Peace“ combo in that area. These mountains were the place of fierce, bloody battles between the Austro-Hungarian Empire and Italy in WWI. Other riders go for high value points such as Giel Kerkhof who rang the rally master already twice today for one object that was not present and one blocked access to a bonus point. Other riders haven’t moved very far yet; Christian Klinger has turned North again and is within one hour from the start. A team of Norwegian riders have moved westwards, crossed the Stelvio Pass and are staying in Bormio. The problem is: there are no points anywhere near this area…are they in a touristic mode already? Many people went to the Carinthia/Friuli area, others to Slovenia. Some riders take straight routes, other are zig-zagging through the mountains. It’s a pleasure to watch.

Riders will get a first taste of what is ahead of them in the next days. Temperatures over 35 degrees are predicted. Not fun when your riding speed is low. The checkpoint opens at 4 p.m. tomorrow. After 36 hours, riders get penalty points for one hour before they are considered DNF. By then, (literally) the warm-up of the rally (leg 1) will be finished.

31 Jul 2017, day 2:

Vivace, col tempo giusto

This morning, the three musketeers of the rally team (Robert, Gerhard and Dave) decided to go to the meet the rally team bonus at the top of the Monte Grappa that was scheduled between 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. They rode some nice, twisted roads over 3 hours until they reached the summit in a relaxed mood.

Monte Grappa

Riders were hunting for bonuses while the rally team members were enjoying the great view over the River Po plain from this iconic mountain. On its top, a huge cemetery and WWI memorial is situated. There, riders must take a picture of a Chapel. However, the riders had to walk the last 100 meters as the road was closed for vehicles. Some panting riders arrived one by one and had hopefully some time to enjoy the stunning view. Great pictures were taken before everybody continued his ride.

Meet the rally team, day 2. Monte Grappa 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.

The riders, however, were already riding for quite some time after they had passed their night and had (hopefully) mastered their documentation of the mandatory rest break. The first task was the text-in bonus: riders had to send a text message to the rally master with the following information: rider number, previous bonus, next bonus. The time window was very narrow from 8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. Most riders managed this task, but some sent the message too late or not at all. The last message was 12 hours 4 minutes too late…


In this rally, some bonus points required a footwalk. The distance was indicated in the rally book. Some riders counted with this numbers, not having in mind that the Alpine region is not a flat country, but full of mountains. This means that a change in altitude might be required. Apparently, this took some people by surprise.

Another re-occurring feature is a changed bonus point. All the locations were verified over the last two years and in the meantime, there is a certain statistical probability that something has changed. In these cases, riders have to apply common sense and to demonstrate that they have visited the place.

In the case of the Mille Miglia museum in Brescia, the exposition of cars had changed and only one out of the four required cars were available any more. Riders solved this problem elegantly by taking a picture of the remaining car, and getting an official brochure of the museum with a stamp and a signature. The rally team might still consider to call the museum to check this information…

After 4 p.m., the checkpoint in Trento was open. The rally stays in the Grand Hotel, an elegant establishment in the centre of Trento. Next to it, the last bonus point was located. The rally master took a video camera and planned to film the riders who would surely stop there to get some small, but easy 200 points. After one hour, he returned to the hotel for not a single rider had stopped there. A good topic for the Leg 2 rider meeting….

Dave, Gerhard and Thomas were busy to take the odometer readings and arrival times of the incoming riders. They explained them that from that moment, riders had one hour to present their filled-in claiming sheet, SD camera card and their receipts in an envelope to Rüdiger, who was sitting in the lounge.

Check-in of IBA veteran John Young.

This report cannot contain all the stories that could be told. Petri Myntti from Finland, who did very well during leg 1, informed that this BMW had broken down and was being towed. Jörg Wehausen had troubles to document his rest break as his credit card gave him problems. Richard Janssen and Harri Stahm could have made it despite a damaged battery, but they arrived at the checkpoint without having the minimum requirement for leg 1: a successfully visited combo. They are all DNF, but they claim they had a great ride. That’s what it all comes down to.

Glad to be at the checkpoint: Bertil Holmberg.

Some dramas were unavoidable. Some bikers dropped their bikes (without big consequences) and some arrived quite late. Kevin was one of the few who wanted to bag the statute next to the hotel, but he entered the park on his bike exactly where the police was sitting in a car. The following inspection of rider and bike took 45 minutes, within sight of the checkpoint, so he arrived three minutes in the penalty time. In the hour after the 36 hours if leg 1, every minute of late arrival gets them 100 penalty points per minute. Dave Flooks, Jochen Riehn, Axel Mueller-Hepburn and Kurt Wapler arrived late in the penalty zone, but they are still avoided DNF. The biggest drama however was presented by Giacomo Micheletti riding with his wife Annarita. He arrived after 56 minutes in the penalty zone. He still had to put his stuff into the envelope and run…the rally master himself guided him running to the hand-in station where he presented the envelope one minute before DNF. Lots of the smaller dramas cannot be told here, but riders had the whole evening to share their anecdotes over a good dinner. In contrast to other rallies, no scoring or hand-out of rallybooks or waypoints bothered the participants. They will be provided tomorrow morning in the rider meeting that starts at 5:30 a.m. After that, riders can plan their routes and leave whenever they are ready.

As no scoring happened so far, the riders were asked to provide their claimed points value to the rally team. This number will be scrutinised by the rally team in the evaluation of leg 1 in the next days. This number is an estimate only as it still might change; not all claimed bonuses will be granted due to errors. Taking into account these limitations, this  provisional standing after leg 1 will be published tomorrow morning after the rider meeting.

1 Aug 2017, day 3:

Andante doloroso

Breakfast was ready at 5 a.m. and the rider meeting of Leg 2 started at 5:30. Riders received their rally packages with the rally books. The rally master stressed some particularities of Leg 2. Among them, the minimum requirement for Leg 2 is to obtain 10000 points from combos. This means they can do one big combo or two smaller combos. Concerning the „meet the rally team bonuses”, in Leg 2 there are no time windows, but there will be group pictures at 12 p.m. sharp. The top ten results were announced and lists with the standings after Leg 1 were attached to the wall. Then the riders had to plan their route and could leave any time.

Gerhard and Robert had to go to the „meet the rally team“ bonus of today. It was close to an iconic highlight of the Alps, the Stelvio Pass. However, it was not simply the pass, this would be too easy for 2100 points.

Park your bike at the pass and walk up to the hut. Meet the rally team: if you are in the group picture at the hut, you get another 2000 points. Meeting time: Tuesday noon, 12 p.m.


The group picture had to be taken at the Rifugio Garibaldi, a hut located 90 height meters above the pass. In total, 6 riders and three rally team members arrived without breath at the hut. Right on time, this picture was worth a 4100 points. The view can only be described as spectacular.

View from the Rifugio Garibaldi on the Stelvio Pass.


It was not the day of Giel Kerkhof. He had troubles finding one bonus and dropped his bike. Later at the Stelvio, he decided that this was not his rally and sent the rally master a message that he dropped out of the rally.

Robert and Gerhard had to ride to their final destination of that day in Zermatt. They took the route down the Umbrail Pass. Suddenly, they realised that an accident must had happened there. They saw Giel’s bike lying on the road and some traffic jam. Girl was sitting on the guard rail and another biker was lying on the road. Apparently, both bikes had touched each other and the other biker hit Giel’s pannier with his leg. It looked pretty bad; the other guy will not be dancing for a while. According to Giel, his leg was also broken and he had quite some pain. The ambulance arrived quickly and took care of both. With typical Swiss efficiency, they were transported relatively soon to hospitals. Gerhard and Robert decided that Gerhard would stay in the same town as Giel to give him support until the next day; Robert continued to destination Zermatt, where the „meet the rally team“ location would be the next day. We all wish Giel good luck and a speedy recovery!

Without revealing too much information at the moment, it can be claimed that it is quite tricky to get to Zermatt, a car-free town. Riders will have to plan their visit carefully when visiting this place, it involves taking a train shuttle and walking through the town.

The study of the GPS trackers revealed the different approaches of the riders. It is good to see that they all have different plan and routes. Some riders chose to pick bonus by bonus in Switzerland, others went the long mile and reached the Western Alps by the end of the day! A totally different approach was taken by Rainer Killian, who went back to the finish already, bagging all the points in the area. Then he did something unexpected: he visited the „fun“ location of this leg; others would call it a „sucker bonus“. To get these points and also a lot of combo points, he decided to walk up a mountain to get the bonus MJW. He had told the rally master about it and was very keen to do it. According to his SPOT, he managed this task very quick, in three hours he was back at his bike. Rainer must be in good shape.

Another plan is demonstrated by John Young: as in leg 1, he rides on quick roads and seems to be ready to go for a monster leg: based on his track, he seems to be going for the two biggest combos together, the „War and Peace“ combo and the „churches“ combo. If somebody can do this, it is John. But the rally is still long…

Hans Faget, second after Leg 1 is still busy in the Eastern part of Switzerland. Steve Eversfield, third after the first leg, rides a very similar route like Hans. They must have a cunning plan that still needs to be revealed…

Benny Watz from Sweden went to the Piemontese Alps on day 3, quite a long way. He seems to be after the „Holy Mountains“ combo. If yes, we will see him far in the West in this leg.

Jens-Olof Lindh, fourth after Leg 1, seems to be liking the lakes in the Italian Prealps: he visited not less than five of them during day 3.

Gordon Sears seems to have an ambitious plan: he went to the Cote d’Azur on day 3. For a tourist, this day trip is quite impressive, but visiting bonus point locations as well makes this quite an achievement.

Last rider location after Day 3


At the dawn of day 4, the participants seem to be all over the place on the map. What is the rally master’s thought of this? GOOD!

3 Aug 2017, day 4 :

Adagio maestoso

This morning, John Young texted when he had a problem in Elva, a small village in the Piemontese Alps. He wanted to take a picture of the frescos in the small church, but it was locked. The key to the church can be received in a locanda nearby, but as it was 6 a.m. in the morning, the restaurant also was closed. The rally master confirmed that taking a picture of both locations would be sufficient.

The rally team squad in Zermatt (Robert and Dave) had a good breakfast and walked to the cable car station where they went up to the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, also known as the „little Matterhorn“. It takes two gondolas to get up to the highest point in Europe that is reachable by cable car (3883 m).

The station on the top hosts tunnels in the glacier with some ice sculptures.

And then there are the stairs to the summit. From there, the 360 degree view is dominated by the Matterhorn and many other summits. A breathtaking view!

Five riders arrived on time to be in the group picture. The weather was good, this was a great point. However, Steve Eversfield, third after Leg 1, told that he went to a petrol station for his end of rest break receipt. He filled up, but then he forgot to take the receipt….a truly sad story, because by this, he is out of the rally. Documentation of rest breaks is essential in this rally. It might seem a bit harsh, but safety of riders is paramount. Sufficient sleep is top priority in this rally to avoid accidents.

Klaus and Ulf won the prize for the closest miss today. They could not get in the gondola up to the Matterhorn to be in time for the group picture. The door of the gondola closed right in front of their eyes…They still get the „normal“ points for that location. As they were after the combo, they’ll have to think of a plan B…

Christian Klinger reported a similar problem. As sad as it is, the rules were explained in detail in advance and no exceptions can be made.

Everybody went down the mountain again and the rally master started the long return to the rally start/finish where he arrived in the evening. Tomorrow, the evaluation of Leg 1 by the rally team is scheduled.

This evening, lots of calls came in. Hampe informed that he was out of the rally. He has problems to cope with the soaring heat and was at the brink of a heat stroke. He took the responsible decision to pull out of the rally. Absolutely the right decision. Nothing is more important than the rider’s health.

Phil told that his rest break starting receipt of the camping site did not bear a time. The rally master’s answer was that he had still more than four hours to find an appropriate receipt. A time stamp is essential on any receipt.

Andreas had a similar problem to find a receipt. As he was in Imperia at the Ligurian coast, this shouldn’t be a problem either…

Tommy reported that the sign of the Col d’Espigoulier near Marseille was not present anymore. He took a substitute picture. He is in a good mood and things go according to plan.

Martin wrote that he liked the sculpture trail in Sur En in the Engadin very much, although he could not find one sculpture. He hopes that nobody else has made a picture and that it indeed has disappeared.

Jörg Cupido kept sending text-in bonus messages to the rally master every day. Today, the rally master enlightened him that this was only necessary once per leg during the stated time window. Case closed.

Rainer Killian seems to like the “fun” locations: he visited the huge plate at the Lake of Constance. It contains a group of five naked politicians…

Even the rally team can break down: Dave, who was on the way to the „meet the rally team“ location on Thursday, had a flat tyre and needed to be towed. It is not clear if he can make it until 12 p.m. to the Col de la Bonette. However, riders who are after the „meet the rally team“ combo and who have visited the other four locations so far, have been contacted and are informed about it.

John Young seems to be riding an epic ride. He is apparently after the two biggest combos, the „churches“ and the „war and peace“ combo. If he manages to pull this one off, it will be difficult to beat him.

So this is end of day 4. Two more days to go. Now, the exhaustion that built up over the last days will slowly kick in. Riders need to get extra rest. Hopefully, they make benefit of the additional points for the extended rest breaks. As I said, nothing is more important than the health of the riders.

Last known location of riders. End of day 4.

3 Aug 2017, day 5 :

Allegretto giocoso

After 4 days of riding or driving, part of the rally team came to a rest. But only to sit down and to do all the evaluation of all the documents of all riders of Leg 1. That means checking almost 60 envelops with their content: claiming sheet, SD camera card and all necessary receipts. Riders had been informed in the rider meeting with great emphasis and clarity about the need to document their rest breaks with machine-printed receipts.

Evaluating Leg 1: The Rally Team in action


Other receipts were asked for stays in hotel or for some bonus points where a ticket was requested. The strict rules were explained in detail and many respective questions were asked. However, there were quite a number of riders who messed this up. Basically, they were mostly rookies. Veterans with their routine had no problems documenting their rest breaks. Another reoccurring problem was the failure to claim at least one combo, this was the minimum requirement for leg 1. Although they were instructed in the rider meeting, some people forgot to include their combos on the claiming sheet. This is a real pity, because these riders are DNF.

Then the data on the claiming had to be checked with the pictures on the camera card. This went quite well. But after an intense shift of nine hours without a break, 14 riders had to be declared DNF including the ones that were already known. It is a steep learning curve when starting long-distance rallying. The rally team hates to declare someone a DNF, but the rules apply to everyone.

In the evening, the second text-in bonus in a narrow time of 30 minutes was available. 30 riders gained some easy 2000 points by sending the text message on time. Some of their fellow riders managed to send the message too early!

The „meet-the-rally-team“ bonus consisted in being at 12 p.m. at the summit of Europe’s highest pass, the Col de la Bonette. Two riders were present who needed this picture for the five-day combo with all pictures with a rally team member: Frank Wamsganz and Wilfried Weyers. The only person that was missing…was the rally team member! Dave had received the new tyre, but he did not make it on time. Luckily, both riders had been informed about this in advance, so no harm was done.

Slowly, the riders move towards the „barn“ aka the finish. By the end of the day, they all have already left France and take their last rest break in Switzerland or in Northern Italy.

Jonathan Baker has obviously visited one of the bonuses of the „Bizarre“ combo in Gruyère: the museum dedicated to H. Giger, the creator of the „Alien“. A creepy place.

Hans Faget visited the Colle di Nivolet, an often forgotten highlight in the Piemontese Alps. As the the very last bit of road is missing, the road never turned into a pass, but a very long dead end road. A very beautiful one though.

Danny Dossman visited the Devil’s Canyon south of Lake Geneva. He needed to book a tour and take a picture of the Devil’s bridge at the bottom of the tour. He sent a „complaining“ text message to the president but stated that he really had a good time.

Wilfried Weyers had a confusing GPS track. He was at the Bonette at noon, bagged some more points, and returned to the rally hotel already today! That’s at least some 1000 km! Let’s see what he plans for tomorrow.

Johannes Dolecek may be out of the rally, but he shows a great spirit and just has a good time. He wanted to go up the highest road in Europe that can be reached legally, the Colle Sommelier. However, it appears that the restriction was extended recently and the last part to the top is closed also on Thursdays. One more great gravel road under pressure.

Today, no drop-outs were reported during the day. This is good news, despite the fact that the riders have their worst day today. Five days of Alpine roads take their toll, most riders will be happy that the exhaustion will end tomorrow at 7 p.m. when the have reached the finish.

End of day 5.

4/5 Aug 2017, day 6 :

Presto fuocoso

On day 6, the rally team prepared the scene for the returning riders. The scoring room was prepared as in the next 30 hours, the rally team would spend most of their time there. Spotwalla links were checked if riders would make it back in time. There were some concerns that some riders would not make it before the penalty window closes and a DNF is inevitable.

UNESCO heritage on the way to the finish: the Wieskirche


At 4 p.m., the time window opened in the parking of the rally hotel. Some riders had already arrived earlier and had a lot of time to prepare their claiming sheet. Between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., more and more riders arrived on time. They were happy to arrive finally at the finish and to end this hot ride over the last days. They reported of temperatures of up to 43 degrees celsius, sometimes the ride was hard to bear.

Sunburn? What about gloves?


After 7 p.m., some riders were still missing. They would collect 100 penalty points for every  minute they arrived late. One by one rider arrived until it was only Kim Leeson who was missing. His SPOT showed that this would be a very close shave. In the end, he arrived at 2 minutes before DNF! With him, all riders that should return to the finish had arrived, all health and safe. This is always the biggest relief for the organisers and is the greatest achievement for them.

After 4 p.m., part of the rally team started already to evaluate the documentation that a rider had to provide after one hour of his arrival. The envelopes with their receipts, claiming sheets and camera cards needed to be checked. Eight people were busy during nine hours to fulfil this task. At the end, every envelope was checked and all information was stored. The room was ready for the scoring the next day.

Apparently, not everybody was happy with bonus ITG: walking down for 15 min to a roman stone bridge over a small river, taking a picture of a madonna painting on the brigde, and walking back again.


After a short night’s rest and the breakfast the next day, scoring commenced at 10 a.m. and lasted for about three hours. Quite some riders had to digest the news that they were no finishers, quite for very different reasons. If they DNFed, it was for a clear reason. In total, 19 riders had to accept their fate and the DNF verdict. 43 riders will be announced finishers of the Alpenbutt Rally tonight. This is a high ratio of DNFs, but considering the high share of rookies (more than half) that had never ridden a multi-day rally or not a rally at all, this was to be expected.

This evening, a big banquet will be held in an external place, a big, elegant barn. After the delicious dinner, the ceremony will be held and the winners will be announced. The standings will be announced tomorrow morning here.

5 Aug 2017, day 6 :