I never posted a report back on my “training” ride with Glenn “just over the next hill” Foley last week. One word : Awesome.

Not awesome in small letters as gets bandied about by rugby players in a post match interview, but real Awesome. The kind that makes you quiver in your socks & grin like a schoolboy.

For a while I thought Glenn was just trying to kill me and sell the Polaris to defray search and recovery costs I incurred last year.  We popped Delores in low range and crawled up what I’m pretty sure were vertical dam walls. He must have had some kind of anti gravity device.  Yes, it was that impressive.

Up, down and sideways, plus through a sludgy river (three times) and it was all brilliant.  We did get stuck right at the end climbing out of a culvert but Obi Wan Kenobi showed me how to reverse back in and jam it at full speed to launch out the other side.

Outstanding. I won’t try anything crazy (or crazier than normal) on Q4Q but it’s fantastic to know if we get into a sticky situation, my Rzr can probably handle it just fine.  Booyah.

This time next week we will be at the half way point of the down run. I can’t believe it is almost upon us already.  So much preparation has been done but there’s still a huge amount outstanding.

Garth put on the Q4Q signage on my grey VW Transporter today, you definitely won’t miss us out on the road.  It looks great, thanks to Garth & his team.  We even have a whole bunch of stickers left over and will hand them out to the Nerds on Quads guys or random people who look like they need some happy branding added to their vehicles.

I’m still trying to figure out so many things for the trip – one is syncing my intercoms with each other, my phone and my MP3 player all at once.  Hopefully I can get it all working this weekend.

Phil & Errol shooting the breeze.

A big thank you to Errol Ballantine and James Kinloch of Radio Today for having me on the Afternoon Drive Radio show this afternoon. I’m a wee bit shy so needed some prompting but they were brilliant and helped get the Quads4Quads message out to their listeners.

We spoke a bit about my background, how I landed up paralyzed and how I have tried to move on with life.  One thing we didn’t get to discuss was how I met my wife on Quads4Quads last year and the incredible changes and experiences we’ve enjoyed since the hot and gritty finish line at Carnival City almost a year ago.

This year, she is going to be my backup – I can’t wait to share this amazing experience with her in 10 days time.

James said they are going to Podcast the interview, so hold thumbs!  You can check out the Radio Today website – they have live streaming as well.  I’ll post a link to the interview as soon as it is available.

Here’s a little bit on who’s who on the team …

Phil “GPS” Case 

Phil is a C6 Quadriplegic.

Jeremy & I decided we did quite fine last year with 45 minutes preparation so why mess with a winning formula?  We now have a spare wheel and some backup fuel, so we should handle all 2,000kms with ease.  That’s 8 days’ riding, 250kms each day people!  Hoohah!

Interests :  Gadgets, Rugby, ATVing, bumming on the beach and keeping my wife entertained with my killer wit.

Role:  Driver of Delores the Polaris:  Will attempt to keep her safely on the road or goat track, while trying to get us to the end of each day without terrifying the life out of co-pilot Jeremy.  As a secondary goal, we decided that we will try get lost marginally less often than in 2010.

Jeremy Forsyth

Feeling great about tackling this daunting task not once, but twice. Last year was a great experience, and now that we’ve learned from it I expect this year to be more enjoyable and exciting. We know when to push hard and when to slow down and enjoy the scenery. Physically I have prepared by walking up steps instead of taking the escalator, and I’ve even considered going to the gym instead of previously just dismissing the idea altogether.

Interests:  I’m a movie guy, I usually watch over 150 films a year. Right now I’m trying to find the worst movie ever made. Other than that I enjoy other nerdy stuff like roleplaying (that’s Dungeons and Dragons, not Dungeons and Dominatrix’s) and anything with science fiction and fantasy. If it has time travel, I’m there before you even told me about it.

Role:  Co-pilot for Phil, so while he’s driving like crazy I’m there to help with all the small things that he can’t do as he is strapped in to the quad, like stepping in a bog up to the knee to make sure we shouldn’t try and cross it. Last year I earned a reputation as being the worst navigator ever, and this year I intend to prove myself by only getting lost once per day (maybe two if it is dusty).

Brad Reid

First time doing something this long and far so I’m really excited. Looking forward to representing my company!! Damn this is gonna be tough!!!!!!!!!!!!

Interests:

On and off-road motorcycling; Mountain biking; Go carting; Ice skating; Soccer

Role:  Driver.

Brendon Parkes

Really Excited for this year’s Event, since I will be riding along with a few more riders in comparison to last year as well as doing the down run, changing it up a bit. As always Newcastle is the highlight on this trip……….if you want to know why, u might just need to join us next year (What goes on tour stays on tour) J.

Interests:  Rugby, Soccer, Bike rallies (on road).

Role: Rider as well as Supporting our backup Boys Emptying the Cooler Box Daily, for this blog – We will say the cooler has Just refreshments insides (Wink).

Shane Gibbs

Comment:  Damn Excited.  Can’t wait to get on the road with all my mates and have a good time.

Interests:  Long walks on the beach, Horse riding, Yoga and Modern/Free style dance.

Role: Backup driver for the Dial A Nerd Team.

 

Aaron Thornton

After hearing about the event from last year I knew I had to get involved, as not only is it for a cause that is close to my heart, but is lots of fun and will take me through parts of our beautiful country that I would not normally see

Interests : Carpentry, Driving off road, hiking, and when at home; playing computer games and watching movies.

Role : Support driver

New GFX … getting excited

Posted: September 13, 2011 in Phil's Polaris RZR

Mr Meen of Dirtpunk MX is busy with an update to the branding on Delores.  Can’t wait to see the final result;judging by his other work and initial drafts, it is going to look brilliant.  Have a looksee on Facebook.

Glenn, who produces Dirt & Trail magazine and runs Quads4Quads is going to take me on a ride to teach me a few things about off road riding.  Although we managed ok last year, I can’t wait to listen to advice and learn how to ride Delores a little more safely and hopefully add some fun to the mix.

I think it will be a great time to try out the interphone intercom headsets.  I might just take the action cam as well and try get some footage too.

After the last minute rush to get ready for the ride of a lifetime, this year has been far more sedate and civilized.  Jeremy and I went for a test ride last weekend with Garth (aka the Red Baron), his family and Flip and Johan. After offloading at Dirt Bronco and being told we can’t use their track that day, we rode through some hectic dust amongst the mine dumps of the West Rand.  It turned out to be a huge amount of fun and felt amazing to be back behind the wheel for the first time since the valentine day ride back in Feb.