Some of us members had an Intermediate exam on the afternoon of 8th Feb and below is my experience of one of my best drives to date
It was one fine Wednesday evening and I saw @JockJKU ‘s message on the Club chatroom “PMs sent”. Naturally the first reaction was oh the PM for the Friday morning drive have been sent. So i quickly logged onto the forum to find a message which read “Inter Exam 8/2/19”. My heart started beating fast. Is it what I think it is?? It was still a week away and it was a mixed feeling of nervousness and excitement.
Fast forward to the afternoon of 8th Feb. A relatively hot day for Dubai Winters. I check my car for fluid levels, clean the air filter again and make sure everything is sealed properly. Inspect the under carriage of the car and everything is perfect. OK good start.
Arrived the meeting point at 1:30PM and all familar faces were present. Every single Marshal and Mr. Founder @alshamsi_m was present at the location. Deflated, put the flag on, removed my ABS fuse, inspected my tire pressure again and said Hi to everyone.
The briefing started at 2PM and @alshamsi_m briefed all of us. In all honesty - I have never seen him so serious. But hey Isfand calm down - just another drive. Drive as if you would drive in other drives. @Johanna had already mentioned in an earlier chat that the Intermediate exam would be like an Inter drive even if a mild one.
@alshamsi_m mentioned the points below:
- A popout will not disqualify you.
- 2nd tries will not disqualify you
- Fish tailing is not allowed
- Jumps are unacceptable
- Side slipping on slopes for fun is not allowed.
So you all get the idea from the above that Safety is the Number 1 priority of the club.
How basically the exam works is that there will be a leading marshal ( @Daggerfall in this case) and the invited members will be 2nd lead each for 10 minutes. Behind this would be another Marshal assesing skills ( @Rashidjass in our exam)
@alshamsi_m asked who wants to be 2nd lead and as I was getting ready to raise my hand. Somebody else did. I am not kidding. I really wanted to raise my hand As we all were getting ready to line up we were also told to be aware of our surroundings. The marshals will float around and cut into the convoy and Intermediate drivers need to show a good level attention and focus.
We all lined up and realised I was the last driver. Nooo!!! I dont want to be the last person to be tested. Adrealine would sober up by then. But anyways we started and........
It was a very very fast start. We would go sideways on the dune to the climb to the top and then some more sideways to go up some more and before you know it we were driving on top of crests. It was fun!! I can’t even explain the fun. It was a fast drive but within minutes we heard on the radio that somebody had a popout. Now what that did is that it calmed down all drivers. It was a good pause. I quickly got out of the car to assist the driver in fixing their pop out and we continued.
So when your 10 minutes are over, you are instructed to stop on the side so the person behind you can take the position of the 2nd lead while you make your way to the end of the convoy. 2nd leads kept changing and some drivers needed 2nd tries in some areas which meant my position in the convoy kept advancing. I was finally happy to be not the last driver to be tested
Remember even if you finished your 10 minutes - The exam will not be over. You will still be assesed until the end of the drive.
The dunes were big. You needed momentum and speed and power but just the right amount. Anything more than the required and you risk yourself and others as its easy to lose control.
@Solmaz told me earlier in the drive - Isfand dont follow my tracks and I am like but I am not
Apparently she was right I was for a short period. So that was another important thing. You had to stick to the original track. Attention & Focus i made sure after that i observe 2-3 cars ahead of me which I usually do but rememeber “it was a fast start... very fast”
Marshals were floating around and everybody had their own style of assesing the drivers. For example I can tel that @JockJKU would go behind every driver for a couple of minutes to monitor the driver and then move to the next.
Finally it was my 10 minutes. I need a technical break or do I? Do I need to ask the marshals that I need to check my tire pressure again or would that be unfair? Ummm so how am I feeling? Endless thoughts in the head but remember you need to bring out your best self to the game. Drive like you drive! Again the exam itself is like a proper test of how you function under pressure.
I think we all did well. At least I thought. Remember the Marshals have eagle vision. They can see everything much more than you
Towards the end of the drive - i thought the same. Isfand you did well! Pass or no Pass - it was one of the best drives I have done.
The whole of friday, saturday and half of Sunday was painful. I had assesed every single post about the upgrades and marshals usually post upgrade announcements the evening of friday but nope. There was a Wagan camp. Ok the camp finished. No whattt, whenn.... but Patience is a virtue.
If the admin looks at my login record he will see that I was the most active these 3 days on the forum than I ever was
Well I did pass and writing this report as an Intermediate. Looking forward to join the Inter drives while supporting the Newbie/Club Member drives as many as I can.
If you reading this and think you have got it to become an intermediate. Be humble, be patient. The Marshals can see it all, they know it! you are being observed
Thank You to all the Marshals for supporting this. @alshamsi_m (not marshal-only founder )
2 posts • Page 1 of 1