Sunday, July 15, 2018

Meet The New Rider Courtnye Nix #947

In the fall of 2015, I was a new rider.  I had joined a Facebook page for Female Motorcycle Riders for knowledge and support.  One of the ladies in the group was talking about this amazing journey she was preparing to go on in 2016.  I started following her as she set out on what I thought was a crazy, unbelievable, never-would-I-have-that-kind-of-courage, journey.  I watched each day, waiting for her to post updates on her trials she had overcome, and there were many.  I was utterly mesmerized by her strength and determination to complete such a demanding challenge.  A few months later I was at a ladies rally enjoying a lovely chat with a lady when we finally got around to introducing ourselves.  Low-and-behold, it was her, my warrior woman, Junie Rose, in person.  I expressed my joy in meeting her and how I wished to have her strength and courage to complete something like the Hoka Hey Challenge.  I explained to her that I had Multiple Sclerosis and something like the Hoka Hey was beyond what I thought I could do physically.  She laughed and told me I could do this, she believed in me.  From that moment on I started thinking about what I could do to join her.  How could I prepare, what did I need to do to join her on the next challenge?

Over the next two years, I went from riding a few hours a week, just around town to riding every day.  Soon, my first overnight trip and later on, to several weeks and thousands of miles on the road at a time.  The more I did, the more excited I became.  By pushing myself, confidence grew organically.  Everything I did became about training to make it possible.  One afternoon, just a few months ago, I received a message from her asking if I was up for the challenge.  My answer: YES, yes I am!

I have to say that I never thought my world would revolve around riding my motorcycle.  I have always involved myself with veteran and military, first responders, children and homeless charities.  I did not realize how involved and gracious motorcycle riders are with such charities and as such have been blessed to combine my passions for raising awareness, funds and support all while riding.  I also enjoy mentoring new lady riders and helping them build their skills and confidence.
I am so thankful for all the support and love I have received while preparing for this journey.  Gruene Harley Davidson is graciously sponsoring my trip.  My husband, KC, is my number one fan, my voice of reason, and always there to support all of my crazy.  Our kids are over-the-moon excited for me.  My sister riders have been an invaluable asset, tracking me on all my adventures, always ready with words of encouragement and bits of advice.  In all, I am most thankful for the Hoka Hey Challenge and Junie Rose for sharing her experience.  Without them, I never would have realized that the only limits I have are the ones I place on myself.

I dedicate this ride to all the ladies out there who have dreams of bigger things but feel they will never be able to achieve them.  My goal is to encourage them to take that leap, push yourself, and find your joy.  You can make big things happen.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Meet The New Rider Michael Richardson # 931

I first heard about the Hoka Hey Motorcycle Challenge from my father-in-law Bob Stegeman, when he ventured out on his first trip several years ago. During his time riding the challenge he bonded with people that he remains in contact with till this day. I think getting around people that have the passion that you have for riding and building friendships is what it’s all about.
Too often than not people get caught up in life’s business and forget about what really matters. For me family, God, building friendships and getting to see this beautiful country (which is always better on two wheels) are what matters. This challenge will allow riders to see things that most people in life will never get to see as the interstate by-passes most of this great nation. Being able to step away from phones, work, I-pads and all the things that consume our lives to travel down the back roads is one of the biggest reasons for taking this ride. During my off time and not riding motorcycles I spend time with family and friends. I have a loving wife and two kiddos so in between, softball, baseball, soccer and basketball, which consumes most of my time; we enjoy spending time in the sun near a pool or beach.
So far overcoming obstacles have been very limited leading up to this event. The biggest thing for me would be getting all my work caught up prior to leaving for the challenge. My preparation for this challenge in all aspects including financially, mentally, and physically has been a several month process. I’ve taken several long trips over the last two years and have explored what it’s like to sleep out under the stars next to my bike. I am devoted to physical fitness and believe I have my body at its optimal performance level.   
My biggest supporters for me would be my wife, kids and close family. Venturing out into a challenge that would test me mentally, emotionally and physically I need a strong support group. My wife has been one of the biggest supporters of me during our 20 years together pushing me to pursue things that would otherwise seem out of reach.
A properly fueled body would be the best piece of advice given to me in regards to maintaining the ability to complete this challenge. Keeping my body fueled and hydrated will allow me to keep my mind clear and my muscles strong.
I’ll be honest, most people think I’m crazy for even attempting this challenge and maybe in some ways I am. But I feel through the support of my family and friends, pure strength and determination it will all be worth it in the end.  

Friday, July 13, 2018

Meet The New Rider Ramiro Pedraza Rider # 934

Meet #934 Ramiro Pedraza, first time Hoka Hey Challenge rider. Since 2016 when Ramiro went with his sister to meet her finance at the half way mark, the Hoka Hey has been on his mind. Ramiro works for an electric utility company as a field technician so he knows about enduring long hours.
For fun he likes meeting new people any chance he gets, be it during a stop while out on a ride, or walking his dog. He enjoys spending time with family and friends, hanging out, swimming, and sitting around the fire.

To get prepared for the Hoka Hey, he has been spending time in the gym, working as much overtime as possible, reviewing maps and getting as much riding time on technical roads.
His sponsors are MX Gear, MO Graphics, and Chi-Town Harley Davidson. Family and friends have been helping by picking up small things he will need while on his journey. Friends have given him words of encouragement, and shared experiences they have had that might be useful.

The best piece of advice he has been given about the challenge was: To ride his own ride, enjoy what he’s doing.
The charity he connects to and is riding for is The Juvenile Diabetes No Limits Foundation (JDNL) which is a young Non-Profit Foundation formed in 2009. The Foundation’s mission is to help individuals with juvenile (type 1) diabetes pursue and achieve their dreams. In 2010 they added a drivers Mini- camp for Teens with Diabetes, “Check B4U Drive” (CB4UD) A safe driving program for T1D teens, it’s about learning to identify and react to critical driving situation...And to be in control of your diabetes. CB4UD, to stay safe, and keep other people safe too. To not let diabetes limit what you can achieve, which is why the Hoka Hey challenge is worthwhile for me to do because I want to see what I got and, how independent I can be, have life changing experiences and prove to myself that there is no limit to what I can accomplish. That anything worthwhile doing in life might not be easy but it teaches you to be independent, helps with new life experiences and opens up your mind to all kinds of different opportunities. No limits!

Meet The New Rider David Beard Rider # 938

1. How did you hear about the HHMC?
From a member of the group that I belong to and ride bikes with
2. Other than ride motorcycles what do you do for fun?
Work on cars, watch movies, travel, enjoy time at home with my 3 dogs and my wife (in that order) 😊
3. What about the HHMC made you want to ride?
The personal challenge and being able to ride that far for that many days in a row. Getting to see this grand country that we live in.
4. How have you been preparing financially, physically and mentally for the challenge?
Buying gear, I will need to travel; researching what others have said about doing endurance rides; making checklists of things I will need and my bike will need in order to be able to make the trip.
5. Have you had to overcome any obstacles to do the challenge?
Making sure I could get time off work for that many days in a row
6. Have you been sponsored by anyone for your ride? (Yourself)
7. Who are your biggest supporters?
My wife
8. Have you received any support from local dealer or community?
No, they are not aware I am doing the ride
9. What is the single best piece of advice you have been given about the challenge?
Stay hydrated – pack light – don’t every doubt yourself and don’t ever give up!
10. What do your friends and associates think of your participating in a challenge like this?
They all think I’m nuts. Some of my fellow riders wish they could go.
11. Why do you think the challenge is a worthwhile event?
I think it’s good to bring people together for camaraderie  and to bring awareness to people’s causes as well as to issues we will come across as we travel across the US.

Meet The New Rider Robert Goffinski # 939

Hello, my name is Robert Goffinski, but please call me Gopher as most of my friends do. Last December I turned 70 years old and wanted to celebrate the occasion by planning an epic trip for the summer. I had purchased a 2018 Ultra Low as a birthday and Christmas present and just needed a destination for the summer ride. In January, while at a HOG meeting some fellow members were mentioning the Hoka Hey Motorcycle Challenge. I had seen Hoka Hey riders at the Moonshine Lunch Run back in April of 2017 and was curious what Hoka Hey was all about. As the conversation went on it heightened my interest to the point that once I was home I researched the website and I decided to “take the challenge.”

Being retired, I occupy my time with many hobbies and interests. I enjoy being creative making many things most people would purchase from a merchant. I make furniture, silkscreen, collect stamps and coins and run an E-Bay store. I enjoy golf, fishing and bowling but my major pastime involves my motorcycling. I have been a major leader in the motorcyclists’ rights movement in my home state of Illinois and in Washington, D.C. I have held elected office and worked in many campaigns, local, state and national. After retiring from 45 years as an electrician, my wife and I moved to farmland country and cornfields of DeKalb County. After the move we spent much of our time remodeling our new home all by ourselves. Although maintenance of our home and family takes up quite a bit of our time we always set aside time for a six to eight thousand mile trip in late summer. Together my wife and I have traveled to all 49 states and from Quebec to British Columbia and the Yukon.

I enjoy doing new and exciting things, sometimes dangerous things, but hey, you want to live forever? The Hoka Hey motorcycle challenge was truly something new and exciting for me.  I’ve always been able to ride and or drive long distances and I felt quite confident that I could do 800 to 1000 miles a day, however the question is, can I do it for days in a row.  I look forward to this being a new and exciting adventure.

Physically I’ve been blessed with good health and very few limitations.  God knows how long this will continue so this is why I had seized this moment, this time to accept the challenge.  Mentally I feel confident I can complete this event just as well as any other rider.  I truly believe attitude has everything to do with success and I don’t like to put limitations on my abilities.  Financially one could always use more money.  I’m trying to nail down a sponsor who could help me with some of the fiscal responsibilities but I’m full ready to bear the monetary obligations on my own.

A number of my friends have been very supportive and wished me well.  They are excited to be able to track me over the Internet while on the challenge.  My local Harley Davidson dealer whom I approached to sponsor me was also excited about the event and my participation. He is ready to sponsor me but he has to get permission from higher up the corporate ladder to do so.  I am holding out hope that the corporate bosses will consent to allow him sponsor me.

Perhaps the biggest obstacle of this challenge has been putting my wife and ease about the event.  She, along with others, thinks I’m crazy to do this at seven years old however those same individuals have told me that if any one can do this at 70 years old, I can.  Another hurdle I have to get over is what to pack what not to pack.  I want to be prepared for any unseen circumstance but then again I don’t want to bring too much, especially unnecessary items. 

I have not really received any enlightening words of advice from anyone other than logical tips on staying awake, which they see as being the biggest challenge.  Of course the usual make sure your bike is road worthy is always mentioned, but in the end, the closing comment is something about questioning my sanity.

This event is one of those that separate the men from the boys, the weekend warriors and the true dedicated motorcycle riders.  These Hoka Hey motorcycle challengers are ready to “walk the walk”, to ride ride, and I want to be among them.

I am using this event to raise money for the Disabled American Veterans organization (DAV) and the Christian Motorcyclists Association (CMA) youth ministries.  With the increasing number of veterans returning from combat with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) the DAV provides needed services helping our veterans successfully make that transition back to civilian life.  As God is slowly being removed from our founding fathers America, the CMA is keeping God alive in the motorcycle community. Their work helping young people, the future of America, to be comfortable with their fate or being exposed to the present of God, is a valued contribution to this great country’s future.  Donations to either of these worthy organizations can be made on a secure web site created for this purpose.

I have been extremely possessed with “the Challenge” since January and for me July 15, 2018 can’t come so enough. It will be “Good Medicine.”

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Meet The Rider Joe Finke Rider # 868

This will be Joe's second Hoka Hey Motorcycle Challenge after learned about the event on the nightly news in 2010. Key West, Florida to Homer, Alaska sounded amazing but it took until 2016 to work out getting the time off work to ride. A good long distance challenge always peaks his interest so why not give this a try.

Joe was able to over come the time obstacle but financing the ride he was able to find sponsors to help. Kersting Cycle Center, Lowell ConcreteMX and M.O. assisted with helping Joe make it happen again this year.  And although he receives lots of support from family and friends they think he has lost his mind for doing the ride again. He says he loves the the beautiful scenery and the people you meet out there.

Joe loves that the HHMC encourages riders to help others and he will be riding in honor of his Mother who is currently fight Leukemia.  Donations can be made at Leukemia Reaserch Foundation
And he will also be riding for DSC for Autism

Meet The New Rider Eugene Lopez # 935

I first heard of the Hoka Hey Motorcycle Challenge back in 2010 from Nate Curley rider # 191, he was a tool pusher on a rig I was doing directional work on, he was going to the ride before I left that drill site.  More often than not I'm  working  on some drill site somewhere away from home, but other than getting on my bike to head out somewhere , I try to get in some deep sea fishing in the gulf of Mexico  a couple times a year, or take a vacation  where I can get some fishing.
  I've known about the HHMC for awhile but did  know anyone else from my area that was interested in doing it until  Lee  De Leonard new rider # 892  brought it up  and my club president joined as well Robert Krauter # 898.    I applied late , got on wait list hoping to get selected,   its hard to get a few day off with my job  much less two week off. I mentioned the ride over last several month to my office when I was notified I was selected I  forwarded them the email and website link . I've pretty much been at work and will be at work all the way until  July  so that I can be able to do the ride.

  As part of a riding club , we do several iron butts a year, in fact it  is one requirement  for a prospect for our to do . In March Robert, Lee and  I did a 5000k/5 day ride  as a warm up.    In fact I'm doing a ride  to Sturgis  fully packed so I can weed out what I don’t need,  2k in two days. Mentally I'm used to long rides, I have selection of music  to aid in boredom .  financially no need to prep. I bought a 2017 CVO Streetglide in preparation for this ride, my 2014 Streetglide  had  right at 78k, didn’t want to risk long ride on that bike, it had been thru some abuses  and not made for a long ride such as this  it had 23 in wheel rack out and stretched out.

Wounded Warrior Project  will benefit from our combine efforts.