The following is a summary of the full rules and rider guidance documents available here. When you read the following guidelines keep in mind that our goal is to see a well-documented ride. If you cannot follow the guidelines exactly, feel free to drop us a line with a proposal. We will be happy to review your plans and possibly accept changes to this format.
The UK can be a challenging location for a first Iron Butt ride because, unlike mainland Europe or continental USA, there aren't any major highways running for 500 miles or more. The routes are more complicated and generally slower. We have prepared some extra guidance aimed to help with first rides in the UK.
Rider safety is the primary concern of the IBA. It is therefore not possible to register an IBA ride in advance. It is solely the decision and responsibility of the rider, if and when he/she undertakes a journey, and completes the ride. The following 6 steps are a proven method for successful IBA Ride.
Note: This description does not replace the IBA guidelines above, it is meant as a summary only.
For verification purposes the most important rule is that the mileage is correct. IBA UK will reconstruct the route to ascertain the distance travelled on the basis of documented receipts. The details from the receipt/fuel log are input into one or more mapping programs, using the "shortest route" method, to determine the actual route as accurately as possible. Basically, all fuel receipts must be present and you should always provide a receipt wherever the ride turns a corner. The correct details on the start and finish receipts are particularly important.
Do not rely on the (often inaccurate) odometer of your motorcycle, as a difference of 20-30 miles can frequently occur in a SaddleSore ride of 1000 miles. It is better to ride an extra 50 miles than to face the frustrating and often distressing prospect of missing out on certification by only a few miles. It is best to aim for approximately 5% extra mileage, to be on the safe side.
When planning a route, always check the distance using the "shortest route" method. Repetitive routes are not encouraged.
A fuel receipt is required at least every 300 miles/500 kilometres.
A witness is required at or near the start. The witness must not be a person riding with you who is attempting the ride. (Extreme or Gold rides, labelled as such in the rides listing, require two witnesses.) A computerised receipt (for fuel generally, although ATM or other computerised receipts are acceptable) must be documented with the starting location and time.
Safety is the highest priority! Observe the traffic rules and speed limits of the country in which you are riding at all times during your ride. Always be alert and aware of preventing injury to yourself and other road users.
A completed fuel log must document all fuel stops. Rest stops and meal breaks longer than 20 minutes must also be documented. Although meal receipts are not obligatory, when submitted they are further proof. Rest stops longer than 20 minutes need not have receipts. It is preferred that all intermediate receipts be computerised, but we understand that this is not possible in some circumstances. When computerised receipts are not available, have the shop/fuel attendant enter the required information (litres; date; time; location; address) on the receipt, and have him/her sign the receipt and include the phone number of the business, on which they may be contacted by the verifiers.
Obtain, and document, a computerised receipt at the finish as this will show the end time. In addition, a witness is required to verify the finishing odometer reading (Extreme/Gold rides require two witnesses). The witness must not have ridden with you. The same witness may be used at the start and finish. The witness must not be a person riding with you who is also attempting the ride.
Document your trip using the forms found here. Make a copy of all documents, DO NOT SEND ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS FOR VERIFICATION. Be sure to include your fuel log, copies of all receipts, copy of witness form(s), copy of a map with your route highlighted, and any other documentation which helps to prove you rode the claimed ride. Send all the copies to the verification team. (Mailing details can be found on the "Riders Form"). Do not send any payment until requested to do so.
With some exceptions your ride verification will be handled by IBA UK.
When we get your ride documentation, one of several people will start the verification process. Due to the extensive work involved (keying data into mileage spreadsheets, map verifications, witness contacts where needed and custom certificate preparations) and the fact that 100% of the labour involved with producing these awards is performed by volunteers, it will usually take a minimum of a month before your certificate will be ready for signature and mailed to you.
We realize this is a long time to wait for your certification. However, our certification process is very thorough. In fact, the entire certification process is what gives your certificate value. It would be very easy for the Iron Butt Association to simply take money and print up a generic "you rode a 1,000 mile day" certificate, however, the value of the entire certification process is in the fact that not just anyone can get an Iron Butt Association ride certification. The downside is this process takes time. We can only offer that when you receive your certification you know that not only have you earned it, but so did any other rider that you meet with the same certification.
Before we can issue your certification you may be asked to clarify certain aspects of your ride and/or documentation by either e-mail, phone or letter. Additionally, certain aspects of your ride are subject to audit by yet another set of IBA volunteers charged with ensuring that only people who rode the miles get the award. Should your package get tagged for that audit, it too may delay the final determination of your claim for the award.
Only when your ride has been verified will you be asked to submit payment of £25 per verification. You will also be offered the chance to purchase pins and patches for your ride.