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Online Kamanya

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Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« on: September 23, 2017, 12:42:16 pm »


It was over. It was now the unpleasant little chore of getting home and having to deal with queues, bureaucracy and, dammit! not being on my #12 bike in the desert. I was missing it deeply already. We were spread across 3 tables in the Hosea Kutako International Airport in Windhoek (this becomes important much later in the story.) drinking beer and filling up on burgers so generously paid for by Hardy. At that moment, it occurred to me that though Ive spent many years with others, I had seldom felt more connected to and familiar with the bunch sitting around me who just 12 days before, where absolute strangers.

Funny how that works?

I also knew that this was temporary. Life would get in the way and though we will meet again, Im sure, we will never all be all in that moment. So I proposed a last collective task; lets write a collective ride report. Someplace where when were grey and old ok, greyer and older, see the photos and we can read back about this time. Also, I know many others would love to know what actually happened

And so, here it is. I am pretty certain this is going to take us a while, but thats just fine by me. Also, there are some of the crew who no doubt will add their 10c too.

I cant wait.

Each day will be written about by the participants and only once all those who wish to contribute have completed that day will we start the next day. The sections will be;

Getting to Windhoek
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7
Day 8
Day 9
Day 10
Day 11
Day 12 Home
I wonder where that road goes? And that, has usually made all the difference. Appologies to Mr Frost

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Offline Johnnie Bok

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2017, 01:05:34 pm »
sub
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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2017, 01:15:07 pm »
Great idea, though I think this will take some time.

I am sure there are still many untold tales, squabbles, fall-downs, and braai-stories to regale us with. :thumleft:
 

Offline McSack

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2017, 01:20:43 pm »
Great idea . Looks like the boss's expectation  of my work output over the next few weeks  is going to be seriously overestimated

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Online Kamanya

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2017, 01:25:59 pm »
Andrew Johnstone #12

Getting to Windhoek



I thought it was going to be relatively plain sailing;

Id made the Bootcamp semi-finals, bought my ticket to Jhb return and just had to buy a new stash of re-hydrate an GU. I would have a month to punish my MTB to top up the fitness levels and lose a couple of KGs. Sorted surely?

Nope. For that whole month I struggled with flu and the after effects. Id gotten a middle ear infection and was now irritatingly half deaf with everything sounding dull and as if I was underwater. I never got onto the bike once. Then to add insult to injury with 3 days to go I got food poisoning. Between packing and wondering which end of my body to stick in the toilet first, it wasnt what I had anticipated when I signed up.

Hardy, the host and chap whos brainchild this was had been sending titillating photos of the buildup; the bikes where prepped and being transported up







His not inconsiderable convoy was enroute



The technology to broadcast the days videos was being checked



I had some last minute alterations to finish



But in the last weekend, all I had was the trots and this



Final evening, I got a serious fright. I couldnt find my passport!?!?! OFFS!

After practically turning the house upside down, it was where I left it. In the scanner. Fok!



So, this is what the picture of health and beauty looks like at 4.30am the morning of the start of my Honda Quest adventure



To keep with this theme, only the very best for this finely tuned athlete. I had a breakfast of champions on the way to the Airport



Bang on





...only by wearing my riding boots.



See you in 2 weeks



Fortunately, it seemed the stomach had settled down, although I wasnt going to risk a fart just yet.

I was left to wondering what I had left behind and more importantly what would the next 12 days be like?

Well, one thing was clear when I got to Jhb to meet the bunch, it wasnt going to be a fashion conscious experience





Anticipation had been building nicely on the little WhatsApp group that had been created for the finalists over the preceding month and now, though Id obviously met all of them on Bootcamp, it was coming together!

Touch down and away to meet Hardy



Um, hang on 2 hours to move 20 meters. Thats what the Namibian Passport Control people thought of these Riding Gods. It was painful and having to do it in riding boots too.



Id started a big WhatsApp group for friends and family and some of the wives and husband for the competitors, we made a quick detour to make sure this would not be hindered



Then, finally, meeting the crew and the Namibian contestant Johannes Haasbroek as the Safari Hotel. Picking up the cool SWAG made by Gerrit duToit





Hardy got the ball rolling with the intros and what was going to happen next. It was made clear that the actual competition would only start once we were at Spitzkoppe. Until then, we were still in liaison to the place. Nothing would be scored and neither would we know who our team mate was going to be. At least wed ease into the whole thing rather than heading off at a sprint. Hardy seemed to be most worried about the Windhoek traffic that wed have to negotiate the next day. We were more concerned about running out of beer.





We took it very seriously and discussed all this till much later



And finally, I joined my 3 other roommates in a snoring fest in anticipation of what the next days would bring.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2017, 08:09:22 am by Kamanya »
I wonder where that road goes? And that, has usually made all the difference. Appologies to Mr Frost

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Offline MaxThePanda

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Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2017, 02:05:52 pm »


Say whaaaaaaaatttt????

You have a tomato shaped pincushion???

Online Kobus Myburgh

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2017, 02:09:42 pm »
Nice one Andrew.

The anticipation prior to the flight was certainly intense.  No one knew what to expect and what the competition rules would be.  Come to think of it, it still seems a mystery to some extent.



Everyone was busy preparing in their own way, some spending time on the bike, others in the gym and some just carried on with normal life.  I somehow managed to get this brain fart that one can get fit within two weeks!



Scrat got us all excited with the shirts and buffs he was making for us.  If ever you want a personalized shirt, he's your man.









Hardy also got the juices flowing when he sent this pic of how the bikes would be personalized.



Another one of the convoy and the little Iveco that was cause for very loud cheers!




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Online Kobus Myburgh

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Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2017, 02:09:57 pm »
Natuurlik was daar baie debat oor watter tools om saam te vat.











Om alles in 20kg in te pas was 'n uitdaging van pak, uit pak en oor pak.







En toe is dit reg om te vlieg.



Maar nie voor ons op die regte noot begin nie.  Aaah, 'n biertjie.



Die manne koop sim kaarte in Windhoek om darem net kontak te hou.  Ek koop twee, een vir elke week en kom op die ou einde met altwee net so terug.  As 'n man eers in die boendoes is wil jy eintlik nie kontak h nie.





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« Last Edit: September 23, 2017, 05:58:25 pm by ktmkobus »
"If you have men who will only come if they know there is a good road, I don't want them.  I want men who will come if there is no road at all."

-David Livingstone-
 

Offline Ian in Great Brak River

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2017, 02:16:06 pm »
Ai Caramba!!! This is THE report of this forums existance!

 8)
1978. It's 6am, mid winter...two up on a XL 185S ... off to my first casino ever with all of R40 and we've got a full tank of fuel, so enough to get there we reckon.... that's determination...

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2017, 02:38:30 pm »
subs   :sip:


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Offline McSack

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2017, 02:56:36 pm »
Getting into and out of this place proved to be both the 1st and last  challenge of quest ...and not small challenges either I might add

« Last Edit: September 23, 2017, 02:59:21 pm by McSack »
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Offline McSack

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2017, 03:03:27 pm »
After weeks of stoic sobriety, dieting and strict exercise regimes  (well for some at least ;) )we at last got to sit around  the pool at our 1st stop in Windhoek and get to know eachother a bit better over a bitterly cold one


« Last Edit: September 23, 2017, 03:05:35 pm by McSack »
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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2017, 05:01:58 pm »
I gave myself a 1.5 hour safety buffer to get through the famous Gauteng traffic from the Free State side, and still made the 10 o clock deadline at OR Thambo with very little time to spare. Thanks Marcel...
 

Offline DirtRebell

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2017, 05:04:05 pm »
I'm subscribed... :sip:
 

Offline Twister

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2017, 05:17:46 pm »
On the plane with the team.

Entertaining ourselves while we are obviously in the slower queue, trying to get through customs.

The taxi ride from the airport which is almost 50 km outside Windhoek

Arriving at Safari hotel
 

Offline KarooKid

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #15 on: September 23, 2017, 05:55:43 pm »
Angus and I flew to Johannesburg on Sunday to avoid any sort of late arrival.

I am still not sure what my biggest fear of the Quest was? The route or the thought of having to go without beer for an unknown time.

So we made sure we were hydrated on beer Sunday night.

Arrived at the airport early. Met up with the others for a Wimpy breakfast and a few coffees where after we lined up in the first of many queues.

Someone forgot 20 sets of mirrors in Cape Town and Scrat generously transported them to OR Tambo and then handed everyone a set to take to Windhoek.

On the flight to Windhoek I watched as the earth became more desert like. Excitement was building.




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Offline Hardy de Kock

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2017, 07:14:32 pm »
The crew that had to make sure our contestants did not get themselves into too much trouble, were well fed, were sorted for digs, competed fairly etc was:

Myself
Janco Breytenbach - Janco has been working for me for 7 years and is probably the best 4x4 instructor in the country
Garron Ockhuis - Ex Odyssey contestant and a soft spoken gentleman with a work ethic that will make your eyes water - a fantastic travel companion
Mark Mcintyre - Ex Odyssey contestant, Prince Harry lookalike that shares Garron's work ethic.
Jaco Kirsten - Ex Weg magazine editor, our media manager, instructor and our friend.
John Webb - Tau as you know him - fantastic instructor, amazing rider, and someone with a love for the roads less travelled.
Christoffel Lombard - Hingsding as you know him, whom we renamed "Staal" on this expedition - a True Adventurer if I ever saw one..
Ockie Vermeulen from Expedition Medics - a Trauma doctor that made sure 35 people came home safely. Ockie makes any expedition easier with his skills.
Willie Venter from Kalon Films - Drone pilot and Video editor that slept for three hours a day for two weeks in a row.
Chantal Burger - Ex Odyssey contestant, my girlfriend, and one of three people that had to make sure 35 others ate well.
Gene' de Kock - Specialised Adventures heartbeat. This woman keeps everything together, and somehow finds time to make sure we all eat well.
Bernadine van Niekerk - Willie's girlfriend and catering assistant.
RPM Media - Jan and Ian Sime that had to make sure Willie got the footage to work his magic. Jan Sime (60+) is the only person that slept less than Willie.
Barend Fouche' - Honda Motorcycle's boss. Barend joined the crew and played his part like a Rockstar.

While Janco and Barend flew up with the contestants, the rest of us had to drive the logistics vehicles all the way up from Loxton.
 

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2017, 08:55:16 pm »
Very nice Iveco!!
 

Offline Minxy

Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2017, 10:16:05 pm »
After being selected as a finalist, there was just soooo many things to do, and sooooo little time!

First things first I knew that if I wanted to see this through I needed to brush up on my fitness. Friends recommended Basefit, they train some of the Roof riders and other top racers. Went just about every single day leading up to the event and can really only thank my trainers for getting me into some kind of shape before this event.
Another thing was brushing up on some technical riding skills, so a couple of visits to Rhinopark were done and also an awesome practice ride through DeWildt. (Write up here: http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=214323.0).
I got to use a demo model DCT bike for a week or so before the event, which helped a lot with getting familiarized.



Everything we needed for 2 weeks had to fit into an 85L duffel bag. This was pretty damm challenging and after a few fashion crisis-es I finally managed to get my bags packed...
All this, and we had to still research and put together a 15 min presentation/chat for Quest on which we were each given a "secret"  topic. Sheesh! Try do all this between work! ;)



Hondsekierie drove me to the airport where we met with all the other contestants. This is it, no turning back now. Goodbye's were said and we were off!

I sat with Ktmkobus on our flight to Windhoek, a familiar face to me as we've met a couple of times before and also flew down to Capetown together previously with Bootcamp. Note the photobomb at the back with Francois, Grant and Charl!  :imaposer:



Excitement was definitely at a high when we landed in Windhoek. Waiting 2 hours to get our passports stamped couldn't even put a damper on it!
Things got real when we finally arrived at the Safari Lodge and met the rest of the crew. Introdcutions were done and a round of beers was ordered to break the ice :) After all the evenings formalities were done we got to retire to our rooms to try to actually sleep while we knew our beautiful steeds would be waiting for us the next morning at Honda Pupkewitz.

At this point I would like to add that as the only female competitor at Quest, it soon came to pass that I'd be faced not only with all the challenges the guys were faced, but also some very unique challenges as well. This was the first... The room allocations were 4 contestants per room. There would be no luxury rooms or any other soft lady treatment for me, oh no!  Lucky for me I anticipated this and I brought my good earplugs... 8)  "Zzzzzzzzzzzzz" To be continued!
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Offline KarooKid

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Re: Our Story of the Honda Quest 2017
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2017, 07:24:41 am »
After our arrival at the hotel we unpacked and got summoned to the first team meeting.

Hardy briefed us on what to expect in the next weeks.

We were each allowed an 85L bag and everyone did that (and some more). This resulted in the Specialized Adventures team having to source a last minute rental to carry the extra luggage.

Guess this would be the first lesson learned- I/we always overpack with unnecessary things.




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