Torq Yak Attack 2012 - The Final Credits !!!
There is only a very small team (read VERY SMALL !!) officially behind what is Yak Attack the event, but "unofficially" there is a massive input from an enormous amount of kind souls, who, without, Yak Attack would not be possible (fact!!)
So if Yak Attack were a film then the following would be the closing credits. They are in no particular order of importance, as everybody's role is equally important in making this event so unique and special. (If Ive missed anybody, I apologise profusely, we will have to put it down to altitude induced dementia !!!)
- Mr Chhimi Gurung and Dawn till Dusk - Chhimi, Subbha and all the guys at DTD work tirelessly to ensure things run as smoothly before, during and after the race (and we all know that in Nepal, ths is no mean task). From arranging permits, transport, t-shirts, trophies, etc etc, they do it all, all for the love of mountain biking.
- Mukhiya Gurung aka Snowmonkey - The hardest working guy on the planet !! Up before the sun even rises, walks the distance the racers ride, does the time keeping, arranges the accommodation, conducts impromptu tours, settles bills and goes to bed long after everybody else is asleep. Big up the Munkey !!!! (Available for freelance tours)
- Bikash and Ron - sweepers extraordinaire. Bikash must have set a new record for time spent on a bike during Yak Attack, but he never stopped smiling. Ron, water station guru and possible future Yak Attack champ? Hopefully both these incredible guys will be racing Yak Attack in 2013.
- Jenny Caunt and HimalayanSingleTrack. Poor Jenny gets the hardest job of all, having to get the Nepali boys to get their acts together, actually getting them to put their applications in is hard enough !! She and HST have also done an amazing job promoting and raising awareness of the race locally and put on fund raising events to raise finances for the local boys spending money etc during the race. Long may Jenny and HST be involved with Yak Attack.
- Buddha Lama of KTM Bike Station. Without Buddha we would all still be lost in the foothills between Kathmandu and Besi Sahar!! He and (this year, his brother) go ahead marking the route (and finding alternative routes to bypass sudden landslides).
- Rataman Gurung - not only the funniest dancer in the world but a maestro in ensuring everybody's bag arrives at its destination (eventually!!!!). Also, drink station manager with a ready supply of "power water" and biscuits.
- Keith Green and Ghandi Nepal. The event doctors. Its a tough old job out in a very remote location. Nobody died, I'm very grateful !!!!
- NepalSutra - Everything Nepali !!! - Sunil and the team did an amazing job under arduous conditions to get reports/ photos / videos online whenever possible, keeping loved ones back home informed of the racers progress and promoting the race / Nepali mountain biking . (We've had to massively increase the bandwidth of our website since they took over PR!!)
- Henri Lesewitz - The flying photographer. It must have been so frustrating for Henri not to be able to race, but by the quality of the video trailer he has released, it will be well worth it when the full video and 8 page magazine article are published.
- John Edward Huddart - Mr Cool !! Probably didn't really know what he was letting himself in for and probably wouldnt have come if he did!! Out on the trails for in excess of 12 hours some days to capture Paul Bolla's epic sub 30 hour ride. Cant wait to see the results.
- Jeremy Dean - Jeremy came to accompany his wife Carena who was racing. He took some of the best shots of the race we've ever had.
- The sponsors - TorqFitness for supplying a range of energy products for each of the 32 participants and the overall prize money, Northface for supplying jackets for all local riders/ volunteers.
- Personal sponsors - Yak Attack is run as an entirely non profit making event with the aim of any profits being used to assist Nepali riders (and eventually the communities the race passes through). Unfortunately, so far that is exactly what it is, non profit making (read minus figures!!) so without the generosity of so many kindhearted individuals, we wouldnt be able to finance the entry of so many local riders into Yak Attack. The following people have made a huge difference -
- Ed Menzies, Ed has been supporting Yak attack for a number of years now and this year sponsored Narayan Gopal (who he later met at the Cape Epic)
- Keith Green, not only gave up all his holidays to be the Yak Attack doctor, but he also sponsored Santosh.
- Gene Colon and friends. Gene contacted me wanting to support Rajeev Rai but when it transpired Rajeev wasn't racing this year (he is in Norway), Gene offered to support Padam instead. Gene rallied round his friends to raise the cash and was looking forward to following Padams progress during the race. Unfortunately Padam had to pull out of the race in Besi Sahar due to mechanical issues, but Gene was more than happy for us to swap the support to Mangal Krishna Lama. Top guy.
- Paul Topham - Paul saw we were struggling to find sponsors for all the local riders so came forward with an offer. We selected China Bikram Lama as the recipient. China was the only rider with v brakes, it was his dream to enter Yak Attack. Thanks Paul.
- Jeff Kerkove - Same story really, mountain bikers want to help people mountain bike. Jeff put forward the support for Aayman Tamang, the races youngest rider. Aayman rode the last 60km without a saddle. Sponsor and sponsored, 2 tough guys in their own rights.
- Peter Butt - Straight talking Peter and first international rider to podium. "Here's my entry fee and here's support for a local rider", no messing! Peter supported Raj Kumar Shrestha.
- Michael Hoeschelle, Himal.de - Not only did Michael sponsor 2 stages of the race , he supported Chandra Chhetri who was taking on Yak Attack for the 6th time. (Chandra has threatened to do Yak Attack on a unicycle in 2013 !!). Michael is also the first sponsor of the 2013 race, again sponsoring stages 1 and 2.
- Mizuho Fujihara - 1 of only 3 females to take on the Yak Attack this year and supporter of close friend Ajay Narsingh Rana.
- With the race attracting a more competitive international field this year some of the prize money seemed to be heading west for the first time in history !!! Not so, thanks to Jeff Kerkove and Keith Green who both allotted their prize money back into the Yak Attack fund and to Peter Butt who split his prize booty between Paul Bolla's designated charity and Doug Brains designated charity.
- Sonya Looney - recipient of the Snowmonkey "Most cheerful person award" and media godess. Sonya has probably done more for online and social network promotion of the race than I have in 6 years !!!
- Paul Bolla, Doug Brain, Neil Cottam and any others I didnt know about for all using Yak Attack as a platform to raise funds for causes close to their hearts.Mtb'ing is great but helping other less fortunate is greater. Way to go guys.