I did my first IBA (Iron Butt Association) ride in the year 2009 when only a few riders in India were aware of this organization.
After the successful ride, it’s obvious to get queries regarding the ride as many enthusiast riders were planning to attempt the same. The most common question was, Is my bike capable to do IBA rides? There are various models of two-wheeler in our country. So a common reply I gave was, YES, you and your bike can do.
To make my statement more reliable and accurate, I planned to attempt the ride to set an example.
My guru Dilip Bam used to had a TVS XL70. So I thought to attempt on that. After wearing my complete riding gear, I rode the TVS-XL for a few meters and got to know it’s not possible to ride 1600 km in 24 hours.
So, the next least possible and available bike with me was Hero Splendor Pro.
On 13-December 2013, I attempted for the ride. At 8:20 am I started from Shell Petrol Pump, Warje, Pune towards Bangalore on National Highway 48. Unfortunately, I did 1552 km in 25 hours. I missed the Saddle Sore certificate. But the good part was I got to know why I missed it and this ride makes me confident that Saddle Sore is possible on the Splendor 97.3 cc.
With more planning, I started my 2nd attempt for the Saddle Sore ride on Hero Splendor Pro on 9th April 2014 at 08:26 am.
When I said more planning means I had to work hard for this ride.
Below things I did extra for this ride:
- Reduced my weight for 6 kg
- Taken a stopwatch to check my halt time during fueling and other breaks. It should not exceed 10 mins. We have StopWatch in mobile but to use it need to open the gloves which consume time. The stopWatch is easy to use.
- As I was familiar with the route, I had made a chart of the petrol pump where I had to do fueling, distance and time required. This was very convenient for me as well as for those riders who have taken my advice for such rides.
- Kept Cashewnuts and 5 Star chocolate in the tank bag. Consume it during the ride for when stopped for fueling.
Pune > Satara > Karad > Kohlapur > Hubli > Davangere > Chitradurga > Tumkar > Bangalore > U-TURN and Back to Pune
Documents required for verification:
- Petrol Pump Bills
- Start and End Witness
- Route Map
- Log Sheet (Time, Date, Location, Odometer reading, Petrol Pump name, and seal)
Note: Same Credit/Debit card required during all swipe at petrol pumps.
On 10th April at 08:17 am, I reached Shell Petrol Pump, Warje, Pune from where I started my ride.
Reached 10 minutes before the time. Everyone there was very curious about the ride. All prayed with hearts so that the ride gets completed successfully. It was very difficult but not impossible.
Yes, On the highway when the rain starts, even bigger bikes face difficulty. I was riding the 97.2 cc motorbike.
Near Belgaum (Karnataka), I saw heavy rains. Saw because the rains were there for a long time. I was moving towards it. Imagine riding towards heavy rains. I would have stopped if it was not a Saddle Sore ride. To save the time I did not stop but to be safe, I was riding at a speed of 35-40 kmph. I thought at least I can cover some distance If I stop its complete wastage of time. Within 5-8 sec after entering the rains, I was completely wet, including my inner-wear. Though I was wearing heavy riding gear but they were not waterproof.
When you are wet and riding the next enemy for me was SLEEP. To keep me awake I consumed more than 20 cups of tea near the toll booth. Tea near the toll both is available quickly like Bruce Lee.