The Hopeless Rally

Registration is now open, click here.

July 6-8 , 2012

Come join The Rally in Oklahoma for The Hopeless Rally 2012. Bob Ray first hosted the Hopeless Rally May 18, 2002, with the rally starting and ending in Madison AL. The restriction for this first year was that the bikes entered had be be under 500cc displacement. Eight bikes began the rally, with four finishing. Four bikes finished the rally, three being Kawasaki Ninja 250s (ridden by Leon Begeman 1st place, Andrew Duthie 2nd place, & Duke Dunsford 3rd place) and a Buell Blast ridden by Daniel Blackmon (4th place) . Greg Robert's 2002 ride report is available here.

In 2003 (May 17), The Hopeless Rally matured into allowing both sub 500cc motorcycles, along with motorcycles at least thirty years old. There were six entrants in 2003, with five finishing. Duke displaced Leon (2nd place) for a first place finish. The other finishers included Tom Wheeler on a Kawasaki 500 (3rd place), Randy Logan on a Suzuki DR350 (4th place) andGeoffrey Greene on a Suzuki GS450 (5th place), Finally, Andrew Duthie DNF'd in 2003.

What is a 'hopeless' motorcycle?

Paul Pellend's 2002 Ural (the only Ural in the US at the time).

Ural's tend to top out at around 60-65mph, & sieve oil worse than most H-D cycles!

Paul Meredith and his two-stroke, 125cc Caviga Mito.

Paul finishes the IBR in 87th place, riding 7,663 miles.

(the bike behind Paul is Eddie James' R1150GS)

Antics on Pauls' license plate.

Paul, on the left side of the podium, being acknowledged for his 'hopeless' finish at the '01 IBR awards banquet.

Paul finished 78th, riding 7,712 miles.

And finally, the first Ninja 250 to ride in an IBR (a Ninja 250 has been in the last four IBR's, finishing three...)

Leon, the Animal, Begeman...

Leon, at the finish of the 2003 IBR, in Missoula, MT.

Leon rode 11,186 miles in eleven days, finishing in 12th place...

Quote from Bob Higdon, regarding Leon,

"When Lisa called out the name of the 12th-place rider, the whole room stood for the second time. The plaque went to Leon Begeman on the 250cc Ninja, who rode 11,186 miles in 11 days. It is the kind of effort that will live in the annals of endurance riding forever. I have rarely seen anything to compare to it. Confident to the end, Leon told me, "Now that I've seen what kind of rally Kneebone puts on, I can build a bike to beat it." I've known The Animal for more than ten years and I've learned this: Don't bet him anything you can't afford to lose."
~ Quote courtesy Iron Butt Association


Fast forward to 2011:
The seed was planted to host a rally that was limited to small displacement and/or vintage motorcycles. The idea is to go back a bit to the basics of riding, when 500cc was considered a 'monster' size engine; whether it is on a 2007 Ninja 500, a 1991 Suzuki Bandit 400, BMW airhead, Lucas fire-trap, etc. With much input from Greg Roberts and Bob Ray, I'll be following the original intent of The Hopeless Rally. Motorcycle entries will be limited to under 500cc, under 45bhp, or at least 30 years old (entries must meet at least one of the three). There may be a few exceptions, such as allowing all Ural motorcycles (truly hopeless?).

This event will offer two separate rides:
30hr format for Hopeless Riders
10hr format for Truly Hopeless Riders

Rally fees:
30hr Registration: $135
30hr Pillion: $60
10hr Registration: $95
10hr Pillion: $60
RTE banquet participants: $35

Rally Schedule:
Sunday, January 1st - Registration opens to the public.
Thursday July 5th - Cookout for riders and RTE participants at the RM's residence.
Friday July 6th, 1000 - 30hr Rally begins from the Tulsa / Broken Arrow OK area.
Saturday July 7th, 0500 - 10hr Rally begins from the Tulsa / Broken Arrow OK area.
Saturday July 7th, 1500 - 10hr Rally ends.
Saturday July 7th, 1600 - 30hr Rally ends.
Saturday July 7th, 1500 - 1800 Scoring & commiserating.
Saturday July 7th, 1930 - Awards banquet (riders & RTE participants) @ the RM's residence.
Sunday July 8th, 0800 - Waffle House breakfast (of course!).

While GPS devices are allowed, be prepared to be able to navigate using traditional paper maps for this event.

As in the past, The Rally has teamed up with 'Hoagy' Carmichael to support Hoagy's Heroes and his long distance charity rides philanthropy. You can support Hoagy's Hereos via a direct donation (they are a 501(c)(3) non-profit) or by participating in one of Hoagy's Heroes charity fundraising LD rides.

Non riders are welcome to join the banquet and enjoy the festivities (or even better, volunteer help with the event & earn a free banquet!).


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Release and Waiver of Liability & Indemnity Agreement

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Last modified: January 01, 2012 19:15:00 / -0600 GMT