The Deadline is Near – and Thanks to SOC Rider # 40

The July 31 deadline to apply for Butt Lite X is near. We could just say that. But how about a nice little story to go along with the nudge?

At this year’s Iron Butt Rally there was a lot of talk about old-school. At TeamStrange, we’re cognizant of history and we approve of old-school.

So y’all know that Eddie James was a founder of TeamStrange, of the Minnesota 1000, and Butt Lite. But Eddie also put together the Grand Tours – starting with the I’ve Been Everywhere Tour in 2000 (visit the locations in the song I’ve Been Everywhere), the Presidential Tour in 2001 (towns named after US presidents), and more. Later in the 20-teens (or whatever that decade is called) Eddie’s brother Jon picked up the baton with the 30th Anniversary Grand Tours, the Whispering Giants Grand Tour, and more. This year’s TeamStrange Grand Tour is States of Confusion, which is . . . well, confusing.

Anyway, States of Confusion rider # 40 inquired about whether a particular building would meet the qualifications for an SOC location. Perusal of the area in Google Maps turned up something that greatly amused the SOC rallymaster.

If you knew Eddie, you knew that he had a mischievous sense of humor and an anti-authoritarian streak.


These tendencies came out in the license plates on some of his motorcycles. Back in the day, Eddie was working at a Harley-Davidson dealer in the Twin Cities, and would ride his BMW to the store. One day Eddie’s BMW was parked out front and the irate and somewhat geographically-challenged owner screamed at him, “Park that Fucking Jap Bike out back!”. Thereafter, Eddie usually had a Bavarian-built BMW with the license plate “FJB”.

At some TeamStrange event, Eddie was downright giggling. He was giggling because he’d just got a new license plate for another of his bikes, and this one said “DONEY“. For those not into the blues as depp as Eddie was, a doney is a term for a woman, often disreputable, and most famously in the Robert Johnson song “I Believe I’ll Dust My Broom” and as electrified by Elmore James in “Dust My Broom“:

I don’t want no woman want every downtown man she meets
She’s a no-good doney, they shouldn’t allow her on the street

Eddie was positively delighted to have put one over on the Minnesota DMV.

So how does this relate to States of Confusion? At the request of the rallymaster, SOC Rider # 40 sent back a photo of a road sign close to the SOC location. Eddie would think this was pretty funny. Thank you SOC Rider # 40.



IBR No Draw Clarification

We always have questions on this.

The top ten finishers in Butt Lite X will be eligible for no-draw spots in the 2021 Iron Butt Rally. That means you get to bypass the IBR drawing process. Whether you must meet any additional qualifications that the IBR may impose is up to the IBR. If you finish in the top ten in Butt Lite X and you already have a spot in the 2021 IBR, bully for you. Un-used no-draw spots do not pass down to Butt Lite finishers below #10.

However, the first place finisher in Butt Lite X gets his or her IBR entry fee paid by TeamStrange, whether he or she already had a spot in the IBR or gets in via the Butt Lite top ten no-draw entry. So, another good reason to strive for first.

Applications close July 30, 2019, tick tock tick tock . . . .

Announcing Butt Lite X Registration

Butt Lite X will start and end in some town or city somewhere in the lower 48 of the USA. The rally will begin on Sunday, July 5, 2020, and end on Saturday, July 11, 2020. The entry fee will be $975 solo or $1175 two-up.

Please read all the information below before proceeding. We know you’re anxious, but reading comprehension is always important:

  • If you are interested in applying for a spot in BLX, read this page, then click on the link a the bottom of this post to go to the registration site.

    • Preference will be given to previous Butt Lite riders, Butt Lite volunteers, Minnesota 1000 riders, MN1K volunteers.

    • You will be asked to provide a brief riding résumé.

    • If you have never ridden with us in the past, don’t despair. This doesn’t mean you won’t get in.

  • After all the data for the application is gathered, you will be prompted to make a deposit of $100 via PayPal.

    • If you are selected, the $100 will go toward your entry fee.

    • If you are not selected, the $100 will be refunded to you.

    • PayPal will be the only form of payment we will take during the application process.

  • Applications will be accepted beginning April 1, 2019, through July 30, 2019.

    • The order in which we receive applications will not impact your chances of getting in. Unlike previous Butt Lites, being first doesn’t guarantee you a spot.

  • You will be notified via email (the email you give us during the application process) during the first week of September 2019 whether you were or were not accepted. If you don’t get in, we won’t leave you hanging. This date may fluctuate depending on where we are with reviewing applications.

    • At that time, you will be given information on how to pay the balance of your entry fee (checks or PayPal will be accepted). We will accept two payments over a period of time that will be communicated then.

    • You will be informed of the rally start and finish locations, schedule and reservation information for hotels.

  • There will be no refunds of entry fees after you have been accepted into the rally.

  • There will not be a waiting list. If you are on the fence about applying for Butt Lite or want to wait to see who else gets in, you will be out of luck. You must apply during the application window in order to be considered.

  • If you want information on what to expect during the rally – rules, route sheets, reports from riders – you can find more information on past rallies (and on Butt Lite X as we post it) here.

  • If you have any issues with the registration process, email us at

Light fuse, get away.

Butt Lite X Registration

Analyzing the top 3 on leg 1

Some quick analysis of the top 3 riders on leg 1:

Rider 98 Jim Owen 50 Eric Bray 10 Billy Connacher
Base points (excluding SEC combo) 9757 9217 9088
Rest minutes 448 485 524
Rest bonus points 2240 2400 2400
Leg 1 total 14497 14017 13988
 # of bonuses 43 45 43
Miles 3207 2912 2943
Time In to checkpt  10:51:00 PM  5:50:00 AM  11:49:00 PM
  • Jim got more points on bonuses than Eric and Billy but fewer points on rest. How important will a little bit of extra rest be on leg 2?
  • Jim and Billy got to the checkpoint on Tuesday night which meant they got the leg 2 bonuses at 6 am Wednesday morning. Eric checked in just before the checkpoint window opened so he got the leg 2 bonuses at 8 am Wednesday morning. How important is an extra two hours of routing time on leg 2? (There was no time-restricted bonus that would have required the riders to haul out of the checkpoint immediately at 8 am.)
  • Eric collected the most bonuses with the fewest miles of the three.
  • All three riders went for and got the 2500 point SEC combo bonus.
  • Between them the three riders went to 12 of the 14 SEC stadiums (two went all the way to Texas A&M in College Station but none of the three went to Florida or South Carolina).

The three riders’ routes were similar yet built of different bonuses.


Jim Owen


Eric Bray


Billy Connacher

What does all this mean for the second half of the rally? We’ll know in a little over 24 hours.

Brief update

We had reported the Schlemans as being out of the rally with mechanical issues on the brand new Gold Wing but they got it sorted out (bad battery) and got to the checkpoint on time.

John Frick and Rick Snyder may have planned their route with an ulterior motive, because we heard that they stopped off at the BMWMOA rally in Iowa in mid bonus hunting. John seems to be having a good time because he hasn’t called to yell at us this time, yet.

Bruce and Adrian Scudella have withdrawn for non-rally related reasons. They’re veterans of many Butt Lites and we’re sad to see them go.

Ian McPhee’s R1100RT blew it’s final drive (how often have we heard that one) but thanks to fellow IBR rider Bob Lilley, is back on the road.

The big topic for discussion after this rally will be GPS navigation, for many reasons which we’ll talk about later. All we’ll say at this point is, if your GPS sends you down a goat trail and we didn’t tell you you needed to be there, maybe don’t listen to the GPS