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Old 03-04-2011, 07:45 PM
IEGPR IEGPR is offline
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Default My 2011 Hahn Story

So let me tell you a story of a group of people who are just plain crazy! This group embarks on a journey of 300 miles though 52 degree water and colder air. O and water that was not glass smooth! Why you ask? To pay tribute to an endurance personal water craft (Jet Ski) rider who passed doing what he loved most, riding!!!! Every February this group of people gathers in Lake Havasu at the Crazy Horse Camp ground and attempt to complete 30 laps of 10 miles each. I say attempt because most won’t make all 30 laps. In fact this year the 2nd place team was 2 laps down. We had teams from all over the globe, Indonesia, Russia, England, Belgium, France, just to name a few. But let me tell you my story. It starts last year when I was part of a team that was taken out of the race due to a fuel pump failure. This only drove me to want to be a part of this team and improve our outcome even more. And this year did not start out so good. Right off the bat the primary ski had an oil leak 4 weeks before the race and that was deemed unable to be repaired in time. Just so happened that the backup ski had a problem a few weeks before and that motor was completely apart. So the rush was on to get it back together and broke in with time to tune it for the race. With just 2 weeks to the green flag Jim was off on the break in voyage and all seemed good. So off to the lake we go!!! Friday started out with a few test runs and of course we had problems. There were bad pump problems and the motor was all over the rev limiter. Then off to get the ski inspected and check in. The clock was ticking. Then we went to pick up 120 Gallons of 100 octane gas, holy crap did that hurt the credit card, then Jim went to fix the pump. By dusk it seemed we had all our ducks in a row. Sat morning greeted us with overcast skies and 45 degree air. We set up our ramp while Jim and Ralph went to the riders meeting. I set up our fuel and just focused on the task at hand trying not the let the cold get to me. Then it was time to get the race started. As I stepped into the cold water and it filled my wet suit I could do nothing but smile as the cold soaked in. I held the ski for the rider running start. The national anthem played and then we waited for the sound of the shot gun. Standing in the water almost waist high I looked down the row of over 40 skis lined up. I heard 5 seconds, turned and got a good grip, Boom! Here comes Jim full sprint and jumps on, then all I see is water coming over me, I did not care, it was a rush. I watched Jim disappear into the white wash and then climbed out of the water. We were off and running and with a first lap of 9:20 we had our pace. 2nd lap was about the same but then 14 minutes into lap 3 there was no sight of our red and black Sea Doo. I started to speculate on what had gone wrong. I wondered if it would be a terminal problem or could we fix it and get back out. Almost half an hour later I see Mark and the look on his face said a thousand words. Jim is hurt and on the beach over there, I was shocked! I ran over to see him holding his leg. A pulled hamstring had caused a dismount and he was lucky a fellow rider stopped to help him back to his ski. As panic set in Ralph ran to get his gear. We were going to pit on lap 4 so not ready to fuel the ski, we sent Ralph out for one lap to give us time to set up for a full pit stop. Jim was ok but out of the race for the rest of the day. Ralph was in for fuel and then back out to run 4 more laps. Pit stop 2 and Ralphs first words, “I can’t Iron Man this thing” But we only had 2 riders registered. He went out for laps 9 – 12, I told him to just take brakes during pit stops and that it was up to him to decide when he was done. He just kept going! Each stop I was expecting him to say he was done but he just asked for water and food. I really thought we were too far behind, but I just wanted us to finish the race. That would be better than last year! The day began to wind down and we found out we were in the top 15 overall. This gave us new hope. Last stop of the day and I gave Ralph the news, only 3 laps to go. He was off and in 12th place. He passed 2 more skis and after 210 miles he came home 10th overall and 4th in class!!!!!!!!! What an awesome feeling after what started out to be a bad day. We had extremely fast pit stops which could not have happened without an awesome crew. Sandy, DJ, Lowell, Bill, Thank you for your dedication! Patti, Denise, Sandy, Anita, Emmy, I thank you for putting up with us boys!! Big Thank you to Mark for all the photos and moral support. And on to next year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 03-05-2011, 06:33 PM
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Insanediego-gpr Insanediego-gpr is offline
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Nice,

I take it your not making the adba drags this coming weekend?
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Old 03-12-2011, 08:08 PM
IEGPR IEGPR is offline
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No Joe, when we got home form Havasu there was a notice on the door. We are now packing. 2nd landlord to let a house go. We will be moving in the next 15 day. We did get a few months free but the notice never comes a good time.
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Old 03-26-2011, 12:02 AM
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hydrotoys hydrotoys is offline
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ticking time bomb for a ski
 
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Great story Chris. Ralph is a freakin animal!
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