|The RT's bug screen (i.e. windshield)|
There’s something about watching the Spots you’ve been watching for 11 days materialize into actual people. Riders that we know and love who have ridden what only a few on earth have done. The bright moon over the Rally HQ bike parking last night lit a path to the final check point in the “Star of the North” – Minnesota. By 6:00 a.m. – the flow of riders into the lot became steady as the group aimed to be in before the 8:00 a.m. penalty points.
|IBR 2017 Finisher photo of Kirsten and Mark|
to add to my collection
Wendy Crocketts’s daughter Tess, sporting a T-shirt that says, “My mom is tattooed and awesome,” cheered her mom in with purple pomp poms and crawled right into her lap after the odo was taken. Troy Martin, who totaled his bike on a sandy corner in OR, borrowed a Harley to drive back to finish the rally. Eric Lipps was holding an adult beverage at 9:00 a.m. this morning in his clutch hand that was injured during Leg 2, which we all took as a good sign. Tina Venters had a huge smile when she exited scoring and Mike has made OFFICIAL rally spouse rank with his bright purple vest reading, “Tina’s Emotional Support System. Don’t Pet Me, I’m Working.” Mark Crane gave me a smile and nod as he made the curve into the Rally HQ parking lot, right on the nose. He told me he only saw two deer on his trip across the UP. Ken Meese rolled in with most of the front of his bike missing from a deer strike. Wolfe Bonham came in just as I got an OK message from Kirsten's Spot as she picked up one last bonus. Her last bonus, grabbed with about 20 minutes remaining, was worth about 50 points. She didn’t loose any points at the scoring table on any leg during this rally. Jim Owen, arriving 1:40 into penalty points, gratefully grinned and laid down on the ground next to his bike. He’s back. And they’re all in.
The rest of the day will be for showers and sleep. The banquet is tonight at 6:30 p.m., and any story not told yet, will be told there. Watch the IBR site later tonight for the final standings. For now, all of us spouses and spectators are just happy to see a full rally bike lot again with the side stands down.
|Kirsten's final bonus photo, with her rally flag and the RT|