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Old 6th February 2011, 18:26   #1
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Default Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

It was that time of the year again.

My participation in the Blind Man Rally doesn't make for much of a history lesson, as this was only the second one for me. In '09, I was passenger with F50 and last year I couldn't wake up on time. This is obviously in sharp contrast with some seasoned chaps from Team-BHP who were driving for the fourth time. This year I made it a point to participate as driver, as I was curious about the experience. And boy, was I glad; as I found out later, driver and co-passenger are two completely different experiences altogether !!

While the '10 edition saw an inexplicable dip in participation from the forum, this year's rally on the other hand saw quite a build-up, with GTO's thread opening to about 20 participants in the first post, and slowly the numbers swelled up to cross 40 participants from Team-BHP itself !! Everyone was expecting a one-of-a-kind mega meet, not to mention the unique experience of driving with the guidance of the visually impaired. By Friday evening, we had more than 40 on the list, with the total number of entries crossing 80.

Yesterday i.e. 5th Feb saw the usual pairing event at 3 pm. Drivers were required to formally register their names and pick up a driving number, following which a visually-impaired navigator would be assigned to each car. For those of you who missed this year's edition and want to participate in '12, this - along with a bluetooth handsfree - is the key to ensuring that you are in good company and don't get completely lost in the actual rally

...or so I thought !!

Anyway, I reached NAB, Worli at about 3:15 pm to find Aditya and Dippy there already. The numbers 8, 9, 10 and 11 were picked up by Aditya, Dippy, myself and PlatzdaTurbo in sequence (thus ensuring that we remained on a sensible route for at least half of Sunday's rally ). Slowly more faces started pouring in, some familiar while some unfamiliar. Got introduced to a few new BHP'ians yesterday itself.

A single-page trial run sheet was given to the navigators so that each driver-navigator pair could then perform a trial run in the Worli vicinity itself, to establish some sort of rapport between themselves. Also for the newbies, this was an introduction to the way the BMR works each year. It was a short 3 km route, but even that was messed up by me, Sahil and PlatzdaTurbo !! Saturday went off smoothly, and Sunday promised to be epic. Fingers crossed.

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-p1250064-large.jpg

Last edited by GTO : 6th February 2011 at 21:55. Reason: Small corrections
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Old 6th February 2011, 19:08   #2
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Rally Experience, Feb 2011

Sunday was painful. Getting up at 6:45 am is never easy, especially in the last days of winter. So obviously, I didn't. 7:10, a wake-up call from a BHP'ian and I was on my way. Unwrapped JOY and made my way to the first meet-up point where I was to meet a BHP'ian. Let the pictures do the talking now.

This was the first stop where I met up with BHP'ian PlatzdaTurbo. He decided that a time-speed-distance rally - with speeds averaging 30-40 kmph) was the perfect to stretch the legs of his Ballistic Missile, the one and only, the Audi A4 3.0 TDI. Applause, and then some.

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-img_0747t.jpg

A quick picture, and we set off towards Worli via the Sea Link... in each others' cars !! I am still recovering from the shock of experiencing the torque pull of that crazy, psychotic, insane engine. More on that some other day. Also, when we reached Worli, I realized that my car had just crossed the 12,000 km mark.



We reached the NAB, Worli Seaface...

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...to find quite a few participants and BHP'ians already there. This was gonna be a big meet, that was for sure.

hvishwanathan with his pimped out Alto

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Moralfibre, Aditya with Aditya's navigator Manju

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Frenzy of activity at the NAB, with the organizers running around asking everyone if they've found their navigators. Some navigators failed to show up, while some participants themselves failed to show up !! But eventually everyone was paired and ready for the rally.

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A group of BHP'ians Aditya, Sam, GTO and Sahil stickering their rides for the rally.

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At this moment, disaster struck !! "Hey Rush, you've got a flat !!"

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GTO was not only stuck with a flat front left tyre, but also found one of the brackets of his jack broken.

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Flat morning for him, and he seemed quite jacked, with the rally about to be flagged off. A bit of help from Sam and he was ready to go.

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-img_0749-large.jpg

The cars began to line up according to numbers picked on Saturday (wink wink, nudge nudge )...

Here's Aditya in his Lancer...

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...while Dippy and Sahil lined up accordingly.

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Sam and myself are ready to roll

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Last edited by GTO : 6th February 2011 at 22:13.
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Old 6th February 2011, 19:43   #3
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Rally Experience, Feb 2011

The flag-off point of the rally, where the tripmeters were set to zero and a car was flagged off after every minute.

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The first car ready to officially kick off the rally.

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Straightaway, Dippy went into FE mode. He must have probably done 25 kmpl today.

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-p1250079-large.jpg

We... well, we all made a mistake on the first few kms itself, but that was corrected with a quick phone call and we were back ripping through the braille instructions. There's my navigator, Dinesh, doing exactly that.

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-img_0753-large.jpg

Early morning meant empty roads and a good drive through the city.

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Soon, we started flying past the checkpoints. Literally.

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Some moments of optimism... myself and PlatzdaTurbo flashing thumbs up.

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But Dipster the Hipster is so confident of winning now that he flashes us a no.1 instead of a thumbs up !!

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...and just LOOK at him flexing his biceps in the middle of the road.

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Suddenly, car #21 (Sahil) catches up with us, completely fried from trying to find his way about by himself !!

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If that wasn't enough, #47 (GTO) caught up too

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Last edited by GTO : 6th February 2011 at 22:37.
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Old 6th February 2011, 20:12   #4
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Rally Experience, Feb 2011

The cars lined up at the checkpoint. This was our convoy till Dipster the Hipster got over-competitive and managed to lose us, to speed away to the finish.

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-img_0764-large.jpg

Now for a couple of epic moments. The chaps in front suddenly pulled over outside Bachelors, and I was like, "Seriously? Ferrero Rocher shake at 10 am?" When I got out, I realized they were wondering whether "take left for bridge" meant the Kemps Corner flyover or the Princess Street flyover. Spent a good five minutes just waiting here and trying to figure it out. Anyway, here's us, supposedly in the middle of a time-speed-distance rally

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-img_0765tttt.jpg

The second crazy moment was after the Malabar Hill checkpoint, wherein we were supposed to go to the next roundabout and immediately take the U-turn back towards town. Instead, we went about 100m ahead and stopped at Hanging Gardens to realize the mistake we made. I can't possibly describe what happened next, and unfortunately I don't have pictures either. Let that be a little secret then, for we never know what authorities are reading this thread All I can say is, Platzda needs some reversing lessons !!

The last leg of the rally involved a lot of left-right at Cuffe Parade, and I found myself utterly lost along with the Audi while Dippy calmly left us to fend for ourselves. When we called him, he was already taking the right at Babulnath. We tried in vain to find the Cuffe Parade checkpoint for 15 minutes, and then finally gave up. Windows rolled down, and Munich and Ingolstadt decided enough was enough. After a whole morning of pottering around at 30-40 kmph, the two cars finally saw Sports Mode being engaged, and Cuffe - NAB was covered... rather briskly

Reached NAB to find Mr. GTO (#47 !!) had already finished the rally. For the next hour or so, people kept coming in steadily.

Now for a few pics of the BHP'ians who made it. Here's (L-R) Sahil, GTO, Dippy and Aditya.

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L-R : Wanderer, Sahil, Paras, GTO, PlatzdaTurbo, FlyingSpur, Platzda's friend.

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L-R : Wanderer, Sahil, Paras, Dippy, PlatzdaTurbo, FlyingSpur, Platzda's friend.

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The Pune chaps : moralfibre and vikram18.

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Rehaan and his navigator Allauddin. Please notice PlatzdaTurbo's attempt to wear Joey's "How you doin' ??" expression and pose nonchalantly in the background

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Cargirl and manaa45 represented the Team-BHP ladies...

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The Yeti seems pleased with his performance in the rally !!

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In true spirit of tradition, Manson finishes, walks straight to us and asks us for our chocolates

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Was there something wrong with the food? LOL... Rehaan seems upset while the lady behind him looks like she's gonna be sick !! Shocker of shockers, Manson doesn't have a plate at all !! Definitely the food....

Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011-p1250112-large.jpg

All in all, a great event and a great Sunday. Massive turnout from Team-BHP'ians (where were all you guys?), most of whom we hadn't met before. Team-BHP accounted for half of all the participants in this year's rally, which is great given that we're supporting a good cause here, while also having fun. Looking forward to next year's event already.

Signing out.

Last edited by Rehaan : 7th February 2011 at 16:13. Reason: Adding nav's name
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Old 6th February 2011, 20:49   #5
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Rally Experience, 06 Feb 2011

FlyingSpur,

Firstly, thanks for creating the report! For those of you who haven't read his 5 star '09 thread, I highly recommend a visit (Linky (Report & Pics : The Blind Man Rally Experience, Feb 09.)).

It was a rather proud moment when Ankit (organiser) walked up and told me, out of 87 cars (or was it 82??), 44 were forms received from Team-BHP. That's like more than 1/2 the total participants. To all of you who drove for the cause today, a huge . Diehard petrolheads can be really nice guys and you've proven it.

I can't think of too many better ways to spend a Sunday morning; the drive was a lot of fun, and meeting other BHPians more so. My navigator - Satvir - was quite a dude. Well-dressed, well-spoken and an SYBA student at Xaviers. He was super excited about life at Xaviers (including the extra-curriculars), giving a shot at the IAS eventually, and his ambitious plans were inspiring. Really....a humbling moment, which other drivers seemed to agree with too. We continue to learn from our visually-impaired navigators in each & every event.

I completed the route in reasonable time. However, missing one checkpoint (because of a U-turn taken 100 meters too early) did it for me. Congrats to Nikhil (my best friend and BHPian NSX) who ranked 3rd. His navigator - Rameshji - made a special mention on stage of the respect & care Nikhil gave him. ACM finished 6th in his Tata Aria (what presence on the streets!). First time for both of them. Not bad, eh?

The event was well-organised; as I mentioned on stage, not a wheel put wrong. Certainly not an easy task with 80+ cars and 300 people present, yet the event went by with clock-like precision. Kudos to the organisers and more so, the guys on the floor / street who were on their feet the entire time.

Looking forward to the 2012 leg already.

Last edited by GTO : 6th February 2011 at 21:09.
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Old 6th February 2011, 21:28   #6
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

What a fantastic Sunday and a superb drive that too for a cause. Very well organised too. Hats off to the Round Table Team and appreciation to all those who made this event a success in including those people who stood out there at the various check points in the sun just for us.

I lost out on my first navigator from yesterday as his train was delayed so carried on with a subsititute. Got lost on the first intersection it self and then made up. We were like a train of 5 bhpian cars. The biggest goof up was skipping the u turn at Kamla Nehru Park and the reversing all the way to come back on track. My navigator was a bit weak in English so at times he would spell out letters and I would guess the correct word. . Apart from that he was humming every song playing my ICE after giving me each instruction. Though I didnt win anything, I'm always happy to complete all the check points. Next time I think I should leave econo mode and drive fast.

It was fun catching up with the good ol' gang and nice to meet some new faces as well from the forum. ACM, Wanderer, kthacker and amitlele nice to meet you guys. ACM your Aria sure has presence. No one would want to see it in their rear view mirror. Mansi and cargirl did well with their ladies team but they skipped a crucial check point at Bandra Bandstand which was missed by quite a few other drivers. Manson was seen going in circles around Cuffe Parade while Rehaan's navigator got car sick on a couple of occasions. Err your driving Rehaan? LOL

Overall it was great fun driving around the city on a lovely Sunday morning. Looking forward to next year's event. About the bluetooth device, I think its only me who should carry one, which I do or maybe I shouldnt

Also spotted was the white LP640 doing a morning drive. Nice.

Last edited by Dippy : 6th February 2011 at 22:10.
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Old 6th February 2011, 22:01   #7
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

Great report guys. Seems like it was a fun Sunday morning. I wish I could have made it. Next year for sure.

GTO for the yellow cargos man. haha.

Last edited by Akshay1234 : 6th February 2011 at 22:02.
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Old 6th February 2011, 22:09   #8
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

Wow...What an event, and for a good cause too ! Although I didnt manage to finish off the entire route, I immensly enjoyed my 1st participation in this event (and so did my wife and Daughter). And of course, it was nice to meet the Team BHP gang there
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Old 6th February 2011, 22:16   #9
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

Reached Pune by 8 PM after the Rally. Great Sunday in terms of the experience. Nothing to write home about my position in the Rally. By the time i reached the end point at NAB i could see Car Numbers way after me already parked. By the way i was number 12 We did pretty well in the first leg. Had some difficulty in navigating the Asian Heart Institute route but that was quickly rectified. Our major goof up was at Mahin near the bus station where we reached Hinduja hospital and then the next route mentioned Barista on the right. We spent some good 30-35 minutes finding that Barista. Finally decided to give it up and followed the next landmark in the route and reached NAB. The south mumbai route was a breeze and completed all the checkpoints but we had already done a lot of damage earlier. It was quite funny when on some roads we could see two cars in the rally going in the opposte directions and both the drivers thinking that he is on the right route.

My navigator (Mr.Arun Kurkute) was quite fluent both in English and Marathi and was reading the route correctly. I guess it was my fault in missing some turns. Anyway a very good first experience. Waiting for the next year.

Great to meet Aditya, Rehaan, Dippy, ACM.
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Old 6th February 2011, 22:53   #10
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

Highlight of the day : Paras211 crosses the finish line.

Question "How many checkpoints you missed?".

"One".

"Ah, so you missed only one?"

"Nope, I found only one"

I believe he dropped his navigator home in the suburbs. In the MIDDLE OF THE RALLY!
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Old 6th February 2011, 23:22   #11
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

WHAT a write-up ! True piece of art. Started with this in 09 and FlyingSpur is still going strong. Thoroughly enjoyed going through it. Had a wonderful time today ,enjoyed myself to the core. As GTO mentioned, cant wait for next year already.
Dippy,Sahil,FlyingSpur & Myself were together for most of the route until the moment when Dips finally came into his own and just left us stranded ! Thanks to you though, the final blitz-kreig from cuffe-parade to NAB was super fun ! , eh Flyingspur ?
Oh and a special thanks to you FlyingSpur, for pointing out the weird expression of mine. Until today, not even i knew that i could come up with such an ugly 1
All in all i thoroughly enjoyed myself and would surely be up for it in 12.
Was great meeting all of you - GTO, Sahil, Aditya, Wanderer , Vikram , Amit,ACM and the others ( sorry if i have left out anyone unknowingly)
Looking forward to driving together again next year & Dippy you better not disappear again !
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Old 7th February 2011, 03:51   #12
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

Great show guys! And classic write up FS. Participation is quite fun eh? I missed two in a row and I hope I will be there in twelve.
Btw, no antics by Manson?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flying Spur
A single-page trial run sheet was given to the navigators so that each driver-navigator pair could then perform a trial run in the Worli vicinity itself, to establish some sort of rapport between themselves. Also for the newbies, this was an introduction to the way the BMR works each year. It was a short 3 km route, but even that was messed up by me, Sahil and PlatzdaTurbo !!
GTO and me messed up too in 09. Didnt quite understand what was going on, decided to have a lassi and energee at Aarey Dairy and back!

Last edited by F50 : 7th February 2011 at 04:15.
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Old 7th February 2011, 10:08   #13
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Default My first time - will be back again and again

Thank you TBHP and GTO for getting me into this edition for the first time. I really had a great time and so did my friend Apurva, and the navigator Kanhia who was simply superb. It was his fifth time, but this was the first time he completed all 10 check posts. He seemed happy with how things went.

It was great to meet the TBHP gang.

Yep the BMW and Audi side by side did make a nice poser moment with their daylight running lights on.

The Ladies seem to be doing better than the guys as far as the winners are concerned.

Missed the 3rd,4th,5th slot (tied at 63 points by just 1 point) was at 64. Lost a few minutes and gained a few points waiting at the wrong final end point behind a set of cars that were actually at the mid point. By hey that how most of us gained penalties.

The Route choosen was a good education to west and south mumbai - Hope they cover east, central and north next time - high hopes considering the location of NAB? Who knows with the kingcircle and Byculla flyovers getting ready this year it will make for a nice route right along the eastern express to navi mumbai or thane.

It's really easy to loose a check point and to take a wrong turn, but one is not there just for winning, but to participate and to know this other world better.

Rehan thanks for the sticker, had kept looking for my -too safely kept- set at home unsuccessfully and was actually banking one getting one at the event.

Amit nice to meet you after about I guess 18 years. We were classmates for a short while and had interacted on TBHP with our respective handles but it was only when we met at the event did we realise who we were.

Touching moment was one of the navigators asking where the dustbin was kept so that he could bump the used snack box. GTO happened to be around and immediately took it from the guy and dropped it off in the dustbin. So many sighted guys look to throw their thrash on the road without a further though, though we can see the mess that we create. There were many such insights that one got as a participant in the rally.

Was too engrossed in the rally to really spend as much time as I would have liked with TBHP team, yet every moment with you guys was fun. Looking forward to more such event.

Some snaps below, Dippy shooting the no1 car upfront, The scenic location at the start, my friend who joined me in a blue T, and me with the green and white strips.

Now to remove the stickers from the car.
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Old 7th February 2011, 10:26   #14
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

Quote:
Originally Posted by F50 View Post
Great show guys! And classic write up FS. Participation is quite fun eh? I missed two in a row and I hope I will be there in twelve.
Btw, no antics by Manson?



GTO and me messed up too in 09. Didnt quite understand what was going on, decided to have a lassi and energee at Aarey Dairy and back!
Of course Manson was going round and round Regal circle multiple times and then coming back and asking everyone for chocolates

This time too GTO went the wrong route on the trial run and we saw him go past while me, flyingspur and PlatdzaTurbo were having Energee and Lassi after our runs waving out to him when he drove past
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Old 7th February 2011, 11:05   #15
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Default Re: Report & Pics : The Blind Man Car Rally, 6th February 2011

Guys, next year, lets all of us assemble first, and then register all at once. That'll ensure we hang out together throughout the event.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PlatzdaTurbo View Post
Thoroughly enjoyed going through it. Had a wonderful time today ,enjoyed myself to the core.
I bet you gave your navigator the "torque-drive" of his life

Quote:
Originally Posted by ACM View Post
but this was the first time he completed all 10 check posts.
And an achievement for you, considering it was only your first time! You beat all of us

Quote:
Amit nice to meet you after about I guess 18 years. We were classmates for a short while and had interacted on TBHP with our respective handles but it was only when we met at the event did we realise who we were.
I know people make friends through the forum, but this seems to be a case of reuniting with an ol' pal?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dippy View Post
This time too GTO went the wrong route on the trial run and we saw him go past while me, flyingspur and PlatdzaTurbo were having Energee and Lassi after our runs waving out to him when he drove past
Gee thanks, guys. Instead of smiling and waving us by, the least you could have done is corrected us!!
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