An Even Tougher Day
Believe it or not the picture to the left (from Reuters News Agency) is not the worst thing that happened to Don in the last 24 hours!
Don called in to Natalie from the Bivouac hospital hooked up to an IV for dehydration and anti nausea medication. He got food poisoning last night from the bivouac food – Don says a whole bunch of guys got sick. The food is absolutely disgusting!!! Don has had nothing to eat all day, he has been trying to get water down, but faster than he was drinking it, he was losing it one way or another!.
Doctors who remembered Don from last years Dakar were coming up to him and asking him how he was doing, and how was his wife. Natalie told Don he should have said “EL LOCO (crazy!!!) to let me do the Dakar again”.
Don was up all night with bad stomach cramps, vomiting and diarrhea. “He said you cannot imagine what it is like to have to vomit in the bivouac toilets!” I say TMI Don!
Even so Don left this morning but his Iritrack (tracking system) was not working. He told the organizers who said not to worry it would work. It was clear that it wasn’t working, it would turn on but then kept turning itself off. Don wanted to make it clear that it wasn’t working so at EVERY check point he told the organizers it wasn’t working. He is concerned that not having Iritrack could result in a disqualification from the race so he needed to make sure they understood it wasn’t working.
Don had 2 big crashes today and says his 690 is well worn in. At around kilometer 20 he had a huge crash and was down for about 1/2 hours (he thinks). Ripped his pants wide open. He didn’t realize how heavy the 690 was to pick up. Then just before the end of the special his front end went out from under him as he was crossing water. Apparently there was a lot of algae in the water and his bike literally slipped out from his hands. We are not sure which crash the photo above is from, but it looks like he had some luck today anyway, a few feet closer and that car would have made short work of the 690!
From looking at the picture, its not clear if Don still has his number bib on, is it just covered in mud or did it come off. If Don continued without his number bib that could be another grounds for disqualification.
Don has also been at the organization tent fighting his time penalties that have already added up to more than 1 1/2 hours.
Don’s final comment was “Just remember I am riding this for a finish not a win”.