This early Monday morning June 28, 2010 (4.20 am local time), and much sooner than expected, Frank Kelly from South Carolina and Will Barclay from Highland Beach, Florida, rode together under the finish banner of the Hoka Hey Challenge in Homer, Alaska. The 2 riders didn’t know each other until they met at the last checkpoint Sunday afternoon. To avoid a risk of accident while racing each other (and a disqualifying speeding ticket) they decided that they would ride together at legal speed and cross the finish line at the same time (which is mathematically impossible!). Other riders next to finish are stated as being at least one day behind the 2 finalists. Still, both riders need to pass a drug test, a motorcycle inspection, a polygraph, a verification of gas receipts and road logs to be declared as winners.
And of course the Hoka Hey controversy has restarted on multiple levels. 1- Organizer Big Jim is not yet sure if finishing together and sharing the $500,000 prize is authorized under the rules he implemented! (my opinion is that if it’s not forbidden, it is authorized). 2- Many are already challenging the fact that both riders would have logged a total of 8250 miles during their 6 1/2 days trip on back roads (interstate riding was forbidden) where the speed limit is never above 60 mph and very often much less (many participants have reported riders using highways.). It is an equivalent of close to a 50 mph average, not counting time spent eating, refueling, restroom time, etc 3- The official winner(s) is (are) now supposed to be be officially announced at a celebration starting at 3 p.m. July 4 at the Stone Step Lake Estates in Homer. No more in Sturgis…(again conflicting information.). But it seems that the small city of Homer has no drugs test lab and no official polygraph equipment. 4- At this day, the Challenge claimed at least the life of one rider who died in Casper Wyoming on Saturday June 26, and several others who have been more or less injured in accidents. (photo Michael Amstrong)