Friday 4th October, 2019 – Fes, Morocco.

I was up at 6.30 am this morning to bring the bike back from the bivouac for the final technical inspection. Pablo’s bike was also knocked back yesterday so we were both pretty nervous riding back to the Marriot.

A near miss with a crazy pedestrian early in the morning was not what I needed. Even the early morning traffic here in Fes is crazy!

Back at the Marriot Pablo’s bike made it through, but mine was a no go.

I had no idea what they were telling me in French, but I understood the bike was not going through. Tess and Hernan arrived and we realised we had missed another tracking system.

Out with the credit card and then Hernan was madly drilling holes in the front fender to mount it.

Another 30 minutes later the system verified with the GPS and I was allowed through to the next check.

The officials asked me a lot of questions in French to which I would just nod my head. We were finally done, but I had missed out on the chance to pre-ride the prologue stage that we start this afternoon.

This morning was again very stressful as we were quickly running out of time, but we made it through the necessary steps to compete.

The other rallies I’ve done – Hellas, Hispania, Pan Africa – are completely different. To be honest, there’s no comparison at all!

My start time this afternoon is 2.10 pm and although the bike passed technical inspection there is still a problem with the throttle sticking. Riding back to the bivouac this morning it stuck on as we arrived.

I will have to do today’s prologue as it is and let Hernan attend to it tonight. (UPDATE: We managed to source a throttle cable, replaced it and it should fix the problem.)

Africa constantly throws up challenges. I bought a local SIM card for my iPhone this morning and there is no way anyone can get it to work, even Maroc Telecom who sold it to me couldn’t.