From Modjadji to Mbombela 2017
- National Rally
It was a tough decision to change our Rally venue from Magoebaskloof to White River, but it was time to bring our H.O.G.® Big Five Chapter Rally home. We felt we had a winning recipe at Modjadji, and hoped that we could continue to do so with the Mbombela Rally. Due to many reasons expected sponsorship was not as anticipated, with determination and enthusiasm we steam rolled ahead and against many odds did the Big Five Chapter proud.
By all accounts, whether face to face, or on social media, the results were positive. We had turned a Rally that was slow in registrations for a while, into a well attended successful Rally in the end. The Ingwenyama Sports Resort was an ideal choice for the Rally, with ample space to host the Rally, enough spaciously equipped rooms, and staff willing to accede to our every request.
Arrivals on Friday registered at the resort entrance with our events team all decked out in their bright orange shirts. Ice cold water on the sweltering hot Lowveld day was important for hydrating the riders as they received their welcome packages, uniquely designed for the occasion. The welcome tin contained all the required information needed for the weekend, with a good few tidbits included. Drinks on hand from the Resort were duly imbibed by all where after most riders off loaded their baggage and made their way to the massive pool to cool down. An organized Bike Wash by a local school team was on hand to restore the Harley-Davidson® Motorcycles to their former shine.
As the sun set we gathered for a casual get together with friends old and new and decided thus gathering would be the perfect timing to project on screen clips of some our members greatest adventure. On the screen was the Sani Pass climb bravely done by our members a while ago on their bikes, which many had not yet seen, and there were gasps of incredulity at their intrepid climb. Screened as well was a rendition of the Skills Competition which was to be held the next day at the local Riverside Mall in Nelspruit. This course was only for the skilled amongst the crowd, and there were 12 signed up for the next day. The DJ’s had the crowd dancing away in the wee hours of the morning, with many shenanigans resulting! What happens at a Rally stays at the Rally is the motto! As rally goers returned to their rooms they were greeted with ‘Room Drop’ surprises, a render of special touch, to make the rally exceptionally different.
Saturday morning saw everyone leaving for Nabana Lodge at Hazyview which was to be the collection point for the VIP gifts, and also the charity collection point for the Child Welfare Society. Some of the children that were going to be supported were there providing entertainment to everyone, and the Harley riders did not disappoint in their giving, though they were being encouraged by our Big Bouncers on hand to do duty. Over R8 000.00 was collected here, which was only the beginning of the charity fund collection for the day. Afterwards the Lowveld roads beckoned to some riders while others made their way so support the Skills Competition.
The Competition was excellently handled by the Marshal Corps, the course set up to test the ultimate riding skills of the participants. This was a timed event, with only three opportunities allowed and with every round completed times improved showing just how well skilled these riders truly are. The event had been advertised locally and a crowd of onlookers gathered to watch, in awe of the riders’ skills in manoeuvring the Harley-Davidson® Motorcycles. We were congratulated on our handling of this event by all concerned.
Gala Night - Outrageous Black & White
Our Gala night, an event that H.O.G.® Big Five has become renowned for. The choice of theme for the evening was ‘Outrageous Black and White”, and so it was, as folk gathered in their inspired black and white raiment. The ambience was magnificent. No big white tent for us, instead a hall decked out in black and white finery, with decorated table settings matching the theme set up. Awe-inspiring to see inside the hall was the Con-Course motorcycles proudly displayed with their kin of Jeep vehicles. Local band Gibraltar was excellent in their choice of music during the meal and prize-giving. The Child Welfare Society of White River was the recipient of a R25 000.00 donation, which was money collected throughout the day and during evening selling of raffle tickets. The draw prizes consisted of a fantastic first prize; a branded fridge and follow up prizes, two weekends of relaxing get away vouchers at the Magoebaskloof Hotel, our previous rally venue. After the prize-giving, and thank you speeches were done, the music changed to a foot tapping beat and the party of the night began in earnest, with music that rocked the hall and got everyone onto the dance floor.
Sunday morning at 8am, a time of devotion was held, prior to everyone leaving for home. We felt as an Exco this would be appropriate, and many joined in the time of dedication and prayer. And so the weekend came to a close, everyone journeyed home safely from our new Mbombela Rally venue. A hearty thank you to all who attended the Rally joined in the fun of all the activities. Especially to those who journeyed from as far as Cape Town. Thank you everyone, your presence was appreciated. It has always been our Big Five Chapter’s desire to hold a rally with a difference, to think out of the normal rally box, and give participants something to remember. I believe we achieved just that.
- Submitted by : Oskar Rottcher (Chapter Director)
- Source Photographer: Johan Spies (H.O.G. Big Five Treasurer)