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Offline Puddles

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #320 on: November 11, 2010, 10:27:45 am »
I feel your pain !!!  :o
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Offline Dustdevil

Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #321 on: November 11, 2010, 08:03:23 pm »
I fractured one bone in my right foot while stretching my legs before. We were traveling on the N1 back to Cape Town and moved over to the yellow line for faster traffic from the rear. As I started turning back onto the road the tip of my boot caught a cat eye.
The pain was so intense I nearly fell of the bike. Nobody else knew of my problem as we just kept riding, I realized sitting on the seat while moving is the best way of keeping pressure of my foot. I just kept it hanging on the side as even resting my boot on the footpeg caused intense pain.
I was not doing a rally and only had 400km of smooth tar to contend with. The X-ray revealed only a small crack in one of the bones. The did not even bother putting into a cast.

Respect for getting back on the bike and riding a sandy track with that kind of pain. :thumleft:
 

Offline Footloose

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #322 on: November 11, 2010, 09:02:54 pm »
I have no words for this.......it is way past amazing, awesome and what not.

Again thanks for the all effort and time that has gone into the RR
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Offline Eggs

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #323 on: November 11, 2010, 09:32:55 pm »

Quote
The pain is pretty freaking heavy but slightly less than earlier. I bite my lips some more, hawk loudly and spit into my helmet. I don't care. This is all just too much.

Amazing how we just 'spit into a full face helmet and not care a toss' when we break something.

I did exactly that recently when I fractured my foot and again when I fractured my wrist 4 weeks later.

One day when I grow up, I want to be like you....Thanks

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Offline BlueBull2007

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #324 on: November 12, 2010, 06:18:44 am »
I realize part of what also got me going again was the spectre of having the cars and trucks running me down in the narrow alley where I stopped between the fences. I must be fooling myself. How can I possibly ride with this injury? I decide to see if I can make it a few hundred metres and then stop in a safe, quiet, open area for a helicopter pickup. I get to one soon enough, and the road is now straight and smooth. What am I going to do now – Stop? I’m reminded again of one of my favourite sayings “Pissies will never be heroes.” I swearing at myself, I ride on, hawking and spitting out more phlegm build up. Maybe I can do ten kilometres. If I get that far, I can re-evaluate my options. That’s a big if. I have nothing to lose.



Whatever happens, when I do stop, I want to avoid the masses and people that come fast from everywhere.  I’m not in a state to do people at all.  It’s too hard to stand up on the pegs, my foot is literally on fire.

There is still another unanswered problem to deal with: What am I going to with my freaking foot? Putting it on the peg is unqualified agony, so that’s not really an option. I try holding it in the air close to the engine. I’m terrified of hanging it down in case it hits something again. But riding through a series of erosions in the road does just that – It bangs against the bike and I shriek in agony. I lean over, with my head close to the road book and squeeze the bars tightly until the wave of pain washes away. The Yamaha is wobbling all over the place like a newbie getting to grips with riding; somehow I manage to keep it on the road. I'm sticking my foot  out to the side like some kind of stupid trick rider move. But I can’t hold my foot in the air forever. Shit it’s so freaking sore. Eventually I settle with the edge of my heel on the peg. The pain is worse, but this way I can maybe ride a bit further. Every time I see an undulation, rock or erosion gully I lift my heel up so as not to generate more pain.


After while I start freaking out again, as the realisation of what I am trying to do sinks in. I must stop fixating on the trauma and try to focus on something else, anything else - like the road book - to get my head back to “normal” mode. It’s hard to see through all the snot and tears. I’ve become a bit of an emotional wreck. This is so freaking hard and I have to force my mind to concentrate: 116.76km…hard turn to the right, then 116.86km…turn left off the road…ICO is..116.29km… Ok, five down-clicks on the ICO for calibration and five hundred metres to go before a hard turn right in deep sand. Shit. I can’t do this.


Yes you can, you useless, pathetic shit, I scold myself. You are doing it boet, just keep her upright. Pissies will never be heroes and remember not to put your f*****g foot out. I gear down fast without the clutch to emulate a rear wheel brake and manage to slide the back around. I don’t put my foot out and I almost lose it because I’m still sitting down.  The left-hand turn is a lot easier, but my foot is not at all happy with all the movement. Then I see from the road book that I still have 337km to get to the end of the stage. Holy shit. Plus 390km for tomorrow, that’s over seven hundred kilometres to go!! Freaking hell, that’s far. There is no way I can make it in this condition, not in this freaking sand. Just try. Look, youre youve done ten kilometres already. Try and do another ten. Then you can stop. Then you can say you have tried.  



It's not so fun anymore now, eh Neil? Cost a shit load too. What a fool I am. The sand and bumps and humps are just too much. I can’t go on like this. Maybe I can stand and just hang my foot out. I try that. It works okay for a while, but my left leg starts to get really tired in all the deep sand. Everything is now just sand with deep ruts and tight turns, though this huge, flat area filled with smallish palm trees. Its very hot and dry. I ride perhaps eight kilometres standing on one leg, pushing my sore foot dangling next to the peg. I have to hold out my right leg away from the bike a lot of the time though to avoid the peg catching on it in the up-down movement of the bike. A couple of times it does and I bellow and snort like a wounded animal each time. I am forced to sit down not long after that because I simply don't have the strength to keep it up like this in the deep sand. I still have 329km to go. I have to rest both my glowing foot and my left leg. My left knee is now also very unhappy thanks to the aggravation to ligament damage I picked up two days ago, but this pales in comparison to my foot. Man-up and suck-up.


My mind wanders. I look down to see if I can see blood coming out of my boot, and realise this is not a good idea at all because riding stability goes out of the window. Focus Neil, focus. You don't want to end up wrapped around a palm tree. Like Phil says: Focus, flow, -finish. Focus…flow…finish. Maybe my foot is not just fractured. Maybe it’s totally crushed. It feels crushed. It’s probably all jellified flesh down there filled with sharp bone fragments. I don't know. The nightmare in my mind continues and it just gets worse. I start sobbing again. Please Lord, let my foot be okay.  
« Last Edit: November 12, 2010, 08:45:17 am by BlueBull2007 »
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Offline alanB

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #325 on: November 12, 2010, 08:10:39 am »
Not quite sure what a "pissie" is, but I have no doubt I am one, in comparison!

This thread is making my eyes water!!!  Almost need a pain killer myself! 

Riding a couple of hundred k's through bad terrain holding one leg in the air because its too excruciating to put it on the pegs, and still managing to engine brake to slide into corners  faaaark!!!!   :o


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Offline Tr0jan

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #326 on: November 12, 2010, 08:24:31 am »
Amazing stuff!

Makes me think of that french dakar rider who also broke his foot, and rode till the finish, stopped, and fell over, bursting into tears of pain!

Jys 'n legend pappie!

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Offline BlueBull2007

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #327 on: November 12, 2010, 08:40:26 am »
I wrestle the bike through the sand. Riding sitting requires a lot more concentration and arm-work. I’m counter-steering like a fiend, fighting the bike to keep the rubber side down. But it keeps me occupied. I check the ICO and compare it with the road book. 321 km to go. Another biker blasts past me. I feel embarrassed that I’m riding so much slower.  It ignites new fire in me and I speed up a bit, but I’m tired and its impossible to keep it up for very long. I have to stop and rest so I do just that. I drink another about a litre of water and force down an energy bar. It’s ridiculously hot. I’m not cooling down. This means I will dehydrate faster. I have to get moving at least. Another rider comes past. The sobbing starts again and I pull away like this, hurting my foot in the process.


Watching the road book and counting down the kilometres becomes a game. I cheer up. Every few hundred metres is a part of one kilometre, every kilometre is part of ten. There are 32 tens to do. Soon there will be less than thirty. 


I'm surprised in these conditions to be able to make out the three distinct characters of myself: First there is the calm, calculating, clear-thinking person with the soothing voice that is my spirit, then there is the self-pitying, snivelling, emotional wreck of my soul, and lastly my exhausted and traumatised body, filled with pain but fighting to go on and doing it best to absorb, decipher and obey commands from both my soul and spirit. My spirit sits out there and looks at my body and soul with detached pity. He is pretty calm and confident under the circumstances.  He knows that everything will work out fine. My body and soul are not so sure. My soul is swings and round abouts, one second full of hope, the next overcome with despair. My body is fed up, plain and simple. The luxury of rest, of sleep is all it wants. They’re plotting together for the easy way out and battle for it at every opportunity. I’m not sure who is going to win, but either way it’s going to be close.


Another ten kilometres miraculously pass. The road improves somewhat, but despite this my soul wins the argument. My body agrees; we will stop at the next corner and call it a day. I am at the end of my tether after all. I have tried and fought in vain. I get to the next corner and start slowing down. A crowd of perhaps twenty people come into view. They’re standing there, right on the corner, leaning out, some are taking pictures on their cell phones. I hear them screaming, whistling and whooping from some way off. “Go, go, go!!” They are leaping around with excitement and applauding.


What beautiful, lovely, lovely people. I think it is the applauding is what does it for me. As if I am somehow worthy of their applause. Little do they know what’s going on in this head of mine. Isn't the human spirit so amazing?  I unsuccessfully try to fight the tears back and ride on. I’m so tired. I think again of the ADVrider supporters, the Wilddogs. They are also applauding no doubt, I just know it. I freaking saw their posts with my own eyes just five days ago. There are some who are watching my progress on the GPS spot tracker, if its working properly.
That’s it. There is no f*****g way I am going to stop now. Maybe I will have to stop a bit further on, but not now, and certainly not if I can help it. This simple experience energises me somehow to ride on. My spirit takes over again: Ignore the pain. Pain is a feeling. Feelings come and go. Feelings cannot be relied upon. Lord, please give me the strength to finish this.


The track screws and twists through the bush and comes to cross a small, dry gully. I bounce in and coming out I gas it too much, pull a wheelie and go down on my right side with the bike on top of me. I lie there with the bike on my leg screaming in agony. I don’t have the strength to get it off my busted-up foot. Two bikes appear out of nowhere in the thick dust and nearly go over me. One just misses my head. They leap off and charge over. Its rescue time. At the same time four or five young spectators run up. The riders pickup the bike while others pick me up and start dragging me over to the shade of a tree. My foot drags along the ground as well and howling, I fight hell and tooth, swinging punches to get my weight onto my good foot and them to let me go. They do this and stand back looking at me with wide, fearful, but adrenalin-pumped eyes. They've just seen a crash right in front of them.


Fabriacio Bianchini takes one look at me and starts to unpack his radio. Pierluigi Clini, the other Brazilian rider holds me up and asks me how I am. I tell him my sad story and this is not a major, it’s just that I fell off now and needed some help. Do I want a pain pill?
“Sure, thanks very much!” Hands me the pill, and looks at me with suspicion and worry all over his face as I gobble it down, actually enjoying its bitter taste. “It’s just that I think I broke my foot.” Pierluigi looks down at my foot. “Shit…I'm so sorry.”

Then I notice Fabricio trying to call up a helicopter. “Hey, whoa, wait stop,” I yell.
“Eh?”
“Don’t call them. I don’t want a f*****g helicopter rescue.”
“But you’re badly injured, you can’t go on like this.” Pierluigi agrees
“Look guys, this is my rally, I paid to be here. I get to choose if I want a helicopter or not.” They both look at each other and then at me, unconvinced.
“Guys, we have one more stage. One. You have to let me try. I will not hold it against you.”
“Err...Okay, but first come and sit down here under a tree and rest a little bit.” Pierluigi takes me by the arm.
“No brother, if go and sit there, I will not get up again. Rather help me onto my bike.”
"Yeah but-"
"But nothing. I can do this." I can see twhat they are thinking in their eyes. He is not going to make it. poor bastard. I know they are wondering if calling a helicopter now will be better in the long run, so I repeat what I say with more resolve, "I can do this. Really. I will do this."

They kindly oblige, with help me over to my bike. Suddenly I feel like all my strength is exhausted again. But I have to go on until it’s physically impossible for me. Until someone picks me up off the ground on a stretcher. I thank God that my battery is okay and I don't have kick start the WR, despite flooding it. I pull away in more deep sand. The bike is all over the place, I am so shakey and weak I can almost not hold onto the bars. But I do, and manage to ride at a slow pace through the sand. Slower is harder but I cant handle the higher speeds with my foot the way it is. They follow me for about fifteen minutes, and when it seems like I will be okay and will just carry on continue plodding along, they zip off in front waving a thumbs up, all the best, brother.



As soon as they are gone I aim the bike for the nearest palm tree and stop so that the shade of it trunk is over my body. I need to rest a little, I don't consider getting off. Man it is hot out here, and so dry. There is nothing but glaring white, white sand, making it difficult on the eyes. I shake my head. I have no strength left. I cannot afford to fall again. If I fall again I will be unable to get up. I finish the water in my camelback suck another energy squeegee and press on. 286km to go.




I think of the leaders, they must be on the final liaison by now, having finished the special.



 



I’m falling behind fast as others continue to pass me, cowering in the shade of a palm tree. I am past worrying about what they think of me just sitting here. Soon the cars will be coming and then I’m in deep shit if I can’t get out of the way fast enough.

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Offline BlueBull2007

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #328 on: November 12, 2010, 08:44:17 am »
Not quite sure what a "pissie" is, but I have no doubt I am one, in comparison!

I doubt that ;D  A pissie is a ... hmmm... well just someone who will rather take the conservative option in case he gets hurt, someone who is risk averse I guess.
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Offline funacide

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #329 on: November 12, 2010, 08:54:21 am »
Loving your writing - well done. Please keep it coming SOON
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Offline BlueBull2007

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #330 on: November 12, 2010, 10:06:36 am »

The sand goes on and on. And on. I am really hating it in my condition. But there are two ways out of this. One is in front of me, and the other will be only after a long, painful wait in the sun until someone comes to help me. I must just not fall again - no matter what. The kilometres are inching past so slowly, and I count them down meticulously. If only I can make it to the end of the special. Im not sure exactly how far that is, somehow I wiped off the mileage mark I wrote on the top of my road book this morning.

Sometime later, after the refuelling point I stop for another rest and Dave comes up.
“Hey what’s up?”
“I broke my foot.”
“Oh shit. Well, hang in there.” He rides off.
I’m angered by his lack of empathy, but really what can he do? He also has a race. He is doing well too. But this anger steels me to ride on. I battle pulling away as usual and wonder where I am going to get the strength but somehow I find it. It is nevertheless getting increasingly difficult. I can feel myself fading.









Sooner or later I know I am going to go over too far on one of these corners. I pray and will myself not to.




Just then I hear “BEEEEP…..BEEEEEP….BEEEEP,” a little pause and ““BEEEEP…..BEEEEEP….BEEEEP.” I immediately recognise my sentinel alarm on my bike. It indicates one thing and one thing only.





Oh f***!!! Here they come!!!


 







Luckily in this part of the Stage I have a place to get off the road. The first three are right on each other’s asses. Believe me when I say it is an helluva experience to be cowering on the outside of a curve when these guys come past. I would say they are 20-30% faster than the fastest bikes. You do absolutely not want to be on the road in front of them, because they drift and bounce as they go past and one little undulation can make the difference between life and death.


I am pleased to survive the first onslaught and press on, only now I need to prepare myself mentally to get off the road at any moment too. In some places this is quite impossible. Again, I have something new to drive me on: fear. 


















Eventually I get to the trial section of the special with only thirty kilometres to go until the end of the special. I’m really nipping that this going to be some horrible sand monster, but it turns out to be rocky instead. What a relief. It is very rocky, in places the route goes so straight over bare outcrop, but I find it easier somehow even though I'm taking a hammering not standing up. Of course there are very sandy bits in between and it on one of these bits that I manage to come off a second time, again falling on my foot.


Im convinced it was only by God’s grace that it also happened to take place right in front of a farm house. The second part of the special is deviod of people except for this one place. It's residents people just stare fascinated at me lying there on the ground, struggling and snivelling pathetically under the stricken Yamaha. It is only after I beg and plead with them that one guy ventures out to help me up. I think they had been warned not to get onto the track, so the guy who helped me was a very brave man indeed.  At one point he charges back into the house, when a car comes past, squeezing between my fallen bike and the building. I am extremely grateful and clap my hands in thanks when he comes out again. They cheer vivaciously. Amazingly, although the whole event was just as agonizing as my earlier fall, I have found a way to just sort-of ignore the waves of pain. Perhaps the vibration of the bike somehow massaged my foot a bit, I don't know.


The trial section only lasts about twenty kilometres and after that the track opens onto a dirt highway. I’m bushed, my kidneys and ass has taken a hammering of note, but I have made it. I cruise to the finish of the special and happily hand in my time card. It’s hard to explain how I am feeling. I’m too tired to be overjoyed, too thirsty and sore to relax; yet I have a great, liberated feeling of satisfaction. I’m naturally very, very grateful. I have literally ridden myself out of shit and I find myself in a zone of exhaustion where the pain is just a throbbing nuisance.

Outside of any injury, I thrive on riding in the "Zone" as I call where you are too thrashed to carry on but have no option but to. Its in this place - Where one has to really dig deep - that I operate well and enjoy. (Yes I know, I'm a sick puppy and should see someone about it, but for it's living!  :biggrin: ) I still have a 137km liaison to push through, if I can get there, then maybe, just maybe, I’ll still have a fighting chance to finish the last Stage. But small steps first. I need to get to the bivouac tonight. 
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Offline madmike999

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #331 on: November 12, 2010, 11:01:49 am »
 :drif: :drif: :drif: :drif:


CAN READ THIS RR OVER AND OVER!

dude you are still one of my heroes!!!
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Offline Crossed-up

Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #332 on: November 12, 2010, 11:40:34 am »
This is the third time I've done this rally.  I followed your progress live, I went to your talk in Cape Town, and now I'm lapping up the RR.  Each time it just gets more intense.  Huge respect to you, Neil!
 

Offline roxenz

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #333 on: November 12, 2010, 12:47:31 pm »
Fark, boet that is just awesome. Awesome, I tell you! I'm in awe. Hat off. Respect.
 

Offline ThinkMike

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #334 on: November 12, 2010, 01:03:46 pm »
Neil - before this event (and I assume you have never been self pushed like this before) did you ever think this is how you would react / cope with this type of situation?

With absolute respect and admiration!!! :thumleft:

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Offline Rokie

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #335 on: November 12, 2010, 01:16:14 pm »
. . .  :eek7:

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Offline Sir Rat

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #336 on: November 12, 2010, 01:45:32 pm »
You are inspiring Neil!  :eek7:  Please keep it coming.  :thumleft:
 

Offline Would I?

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #337 on: November 12, 2010, 03:24:55 pm »
Thanks Neil......... my fix for the day!!!1  :thumleft: :thumleft:
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Offline Sandban(g)k

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #338 on: November 12, 2010, 03:28:32 pm »
Awesome, met n hoofletter A :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:
 

Offline yaartbrak

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Re: Living the Dos Sertoes Dream: Racing 4,500km across Brazil
« Reply #339 on: November 12, 2010, 03:45:05 pm »
Nee wat Kerels ek dink dit is meer as net 'n groot A ... Awesome, dis sommer net BEFOK!!!!!!!!

Ek kannie wag vir die volgende episode nie, ek voel soos 'n "druggie" wat nie weet waar sy volgende strooitjie of grassies gaan vandaan kom nie, daai totale "not knowing" gevoel, moederloosheid!!!!!!!

Ek will net se , en mans erken mos nie die goed nie, maar fok, ek het klein knaters in vergelyking!!!!

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