Honda R&D Americas Inc. Enters Vehicles in the 2018 Rebelle Rally – The Ultimate Proving Ground Competition

August 14, 2018 (Reno, NV) – Today the Rebelle Rally, the first women’s off-road navigation rally raid in the U.S., announces Honda will be fielding two teams of Honda R&D Americas Inc. employees to compete in the rally this October. A ten-day automotive endurance event with eight days of competition, the Rebelle Rally is designed for manufacturer vehicles, not race cars, making it the ultimate product proving ground.

Honda is entering two vehicles in the Crossover (CUV) class – the 2019 Honda Pilot and 2018 Ridgeline. The CUV-specific course includes over 2,500 kilometers of a wide variety of terrain – from dirt roads, two-tracks, rocky washes, and massive sand dunes.  Both Honda vehicles will be mostly stock, with minimal modifications including skid plates, lights, and robust off-road tires.

“The vision of the Rebelle Rally was to create a serious testing platform for manufacturers, coupled with our tech backbone and challenging long distance course designed specifically for the vehicles we drive every day.  We are excited to welcome Honda’s teams of engineers and are looking forward to seeing the results from their program,” noted rally founder Emily Miller.

About the Rebelle Rally
Entering its third year, to date the Rebelle Rally has hosted competitors from 136 cities, 35 states/provinces, and 7 countries. The world-class event is the longest competitive off-road rally in the lower 48, and takes place October 11th – October 20th with a start in Lake Tahoe and finish in San Diego. It is a unique challenge and scoring system where precise navigation, not speed, is the ultimate goal. Participants trade in cell phones and GPSs for old-school navigation in a competition for the elements of time, distance, headings, and hidden checkpoints. Armed with just maps, compasses, and roadbooks, up to 50 teams of two will be pushed to their limits as they make their way across Nevada and California’s desert terrain.


Honda R&D Americas Inc. Enters Vehicles in the 2018 Rebelle Rally – The Ultimate Proving Ground Competition2018-08-14T17:23:47-07:00

2018 Press and Social Media Recommendations

How do you make the most of your media on a rally that you can’t use your phone? We have great coverage planned this year, and have put together some simple recommendations to help make the most of your media for your team!


  • Visit our website frequently to stay updated on the Rebelle and get the latest news.
  • Sign up for our emails. Get Rebelle news directly to your inbox! You will receive our monthly newsletter, press releases, and also daily updates during the Rebelle.
  • Follow us on social media. We are social! Much of our news and info hits social media first, so stay in the loop by following us. We do our best to tag every person/team appropriately on social media, but we can’t tag you if we don’t know you exist on social media.
  • Create social media accounts for your team. The best way to update your friends, family, sponsors, and fans on your Rebelle Rally progress is creating team social media accounts. Whether you choose Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, etc. is up to you, but keep in mind how much you can actually manage and what platform/s work best for your audience.
  • Designate a social media manager to update your social media accounts while you are on the rally. Give them access to your personal accounts or your team accounts so they may post on your behalf while you are on digital detox. If they have access, they will also be notified (depending on your privacy settings) when you are tagged in one of our posts, and can then share/retweet/repost. Make sure they are familiar with whichever platforms you are posting on.
  • Send us your Team Tuesday questionnaire. Every Tuesday we feature a Rebelle team on our blog and social media. This is a great way for our audience and yours to get to know you! You can also send your potential sponsors the link to your Team Tuesday profile so they can see you on a Rebelle platform. This also helps us when we pitch stories to media. They better we get to know you, the better we can tell your stories.
  • Pitch your own press. We encourage your team to go after your own press! Research the local newspaper or TV station’s “human interest” or sports reporter, and pitch your team’s story. Remember, there’s nothing like the Rebelle in the nation, and the fact your team’s town/city is being represented in it is a great story already. Don’t forget to point out in your pitch viewers/readers can track your team live on our website! You can also suggest a post-rally interview as a follow-up, so viewers/readers can see how you finished, your thoughts on the rally, and wrap up your story.
    • Please note, we are not your personal publicist! We may or may not contact regional media in your area with your team’s story, and will be in touch with you should things progress into a story/interview.
  • Buy a Rebelle Rally Photo Package. Get stunning images of your team from the rally from our world-class photographers. The photo package images are rights-cleared for personal and commercial use and can be used in a number of ways. Purchasing a photo package means your team’s photo manager will receive access to a selection of our photographer’s daily photos during the rally. You can find all the photo package information in the Competitor Zone of the Website.
  • Send in your Team Bio info. A few weeks leading up to the rally and during the rally, we post everyone’s Team Bio info so people following the rally can get to know the teams. This information exists on our website, and we often link to it on our blogs and daily updates. This is a great place for sponsor shout outs. The Team Bio questionnaire link will be available September 10th.  And like Team Tuesdays, the better we get to know you, the better we can tell your stories and pitch them to press.


  • Ensure your family, friends, fans, and sponsors are signed up for the newsletter.  During the rally, we send out a daily update to this database. It includes a press update, course and terrain description, special stories, standings, images, video, and links. You can sign up for our newsletter at
  • Provide your social media manager’s email address at Tech Inspection. At Tech Inspection we will have a station for you to provide your social media manager’s email. They will receive a special press release daily during the rally with a link to that day’s photos, which they can then share with your sponsors or on your social media. Please make sure they add to their address book so the emails don’t just go to the junk mail folder.
  • Direct your fans to follow your team at On the Live page, people can live track your team, check the scores, look at team bios, read the daily updates, or visit our blog. Have them bookmark this page during the rally!
  • Download the YB Races App. While your fans can live track your team on our website, they can also do it on their phones. Have them download the YB Races app (available for iOS and Android), and search for Rebelle Rally. The tracking will be available by competition day, and will usually appear on the app on the day it goes live. Your fans or social media manager can track your progress, take screenshots, and update others to your progress.
  • Onsite press. We will have media onsite during the rally that may approach you during the competition for interviews and images. All media onsite has been cleared by the rally, meaning they are from an accredited, approved media source.
    • If you have a media outlet interested in covering your team onsite during the rally, please contact Kirsten Tiegen:, and she will be in contact with the media person directly to complete a media application and media approval process.
  • Do an interview during the rally. If an outlet is interested in interviewing your team during the rally, we can facilitate this via Skype, telephone, and other ways of communication. This will need to be scheduled ahead of time to ensure team is available at Base Camp (i.e. a mid-afternoon interview would not be possible given team would still be on course at that time and not at Base Camp).
  • Send media requests to us. If an accredited outlet is interested in rights-cleared images specifically of your team during the rally, please provide Kirsten’s contact information to them and she will facilitate.
  • Have your fans and social media manager follow us on social. If your fans want to know your progress during the rally, have them follow our social media! We post multiple times a day on all platforms (Facebook, Facebook Stories, Instagram, Instagram stories, Twitter, and YouTube). They may not be able to catch up with you in person, but they can potentially catch a glimpse of you on our social!
  • Get notified when we make a social media post. We get it – there’s a lot going on your social media feed. During the rally, opt to get notifications when we post so you can stay up-to-date on rally news.
    • On Facebook: Go to the top of our page (com/rebellerally) and tap the “Follow/Following” button. From there you can opt to get notifications when we make a post, or to see our posts first in your feed. You can opt to do both, either, or none, and you can change this at any time.
    • On Instagram: Go to our profile (@rebellerally) and follow us. Then tap the three dots in the top right corner. At the bottom of the options should be “Turn on Post Notifications”. Tap to turn on. These can be turned off at any time.
    • On Twitter:
      • On Desktop: Go to our profile (@rebellerally) and follow us. Next to the “Follow” button in the top right corner should be three dots. Click the three dot and click on “Turn on Mobile Notifications.”
      • On Mobile: Go to our profile (@rebellerally) and follow us. Next to the “Follow” button in the top right corner should be a bell symbol with a plus sign. Tap the button and tap “All Tweets” to turn on account notifications.
  • Share, repost, retweet. Spread the Rebelle news! Share from our social media accounts to yours. We just ask you tag us @rebellerally and tag it with #rebellerally so we are notified and tagged appropriately.
  • Make sure privacy settings are turned off if you would like to be tagged in our social media posts. If you would like to be tagged, make sure your privacy settings allow you to do so.
    • Facebook: Go to your Facebook settings, and then click on “Timeline and Tagging” on the left side to change your options. You can set the audience of who can see the post, or whether you require review before the tags appear on Facebook.
    • Instagram: Go to your Instagram settings. You can set whether your profile is public or private (Account Privacy > Private Account), or whether you want photos you are tagged in to appear in your profile (Privacy & Security > Photos of You).
    • Twitter:
    • On Desktop: Go to your Twitter settings and clink on “Privacy and Safety” on the left. Under “Photo Tagging” you can set who can tag you in photos.
    • On Mobile: Go to your Twitter settings and then go to “Privacy and Safety. Under “Tweets” there is a “Photo Tagging” option where you can set if anyone can tag you in photos or if only people you follow can tag you in photos.


  • Post-rally press. Once the rally ends, your story will live on. We may contact you after the final day for interview opportunities. If you have an accredited media outlet reaching out to you directly, we are more than happy to supply images and b-roll to the outlet.
  • Sign up for Google alerts for media on the Rebelle Rally. This is a great way for you to keep track of Rebelle media, and use in a recap report to your sponsors. And make sure to read each and every article – you never know when and where your team may be mentioned or pictured!
  • Research media numbers to present with your recap. Sponsors and potential sponsors like to see numbers. Dress them up in a report to show how much of an impact their sponsorship has made/will make.
  • Stay up-to-date with our social media. Here, we share media stories as they come in. Stay updated in case you missed one!
  • Use your images. If you’ve purchased the photo packages, these photos are your rights-cleared tools. Use them. Here are some ideas:
  • Print and send along to your sponsors as a thank you.
  • Email a folder of images to your sponsors and suggest they use in their next ad campaign.
  • Print and auction off at a post-rally fundraising party to help with registration costs.
    • Send them on to the media you previously pitched.
    • Use in your wrap up report to your sponsors.
    • Use as promotional tool for your next adventure.
    • Create postcards and send thank you notes to everyone that helped you Rebelle.

2018 Press and Social Media Recommendations2018-08-02T16:45:34-07:00

Vehicle Build: Kaleigh Hotchkiss’s Rebelle-Winning Jeep TJ

What goes into building a winning Rebelle vehicle? We asked two-time Rebelle 4×4 Class winner Kaleigh Hotchkiss to find out! Check out the story on her 1999 Jeep TJ Build that took the highest score in our 2017 rally:

Early in 2014, I decided I wanted to buy a Jeep as a weekend toy for camping with my dog. Within a couple weeks of searching, I found a 1999 Jeep TJ Sahara 4.0L automatic and at the suggestion of some friends, I asked Ryan Miller to come along with me to take a look. The Jeep was the definition of a rust bucket, but everything seemed to work, and for camping and easy dirt roads I figured it would be fine.

A couple years passed and I ended up doing a lot more in the Jeep than just camping. With very slight modifications, the Jeep had done several trails throughout the state, Moab, Glamis, and more. (Side note- Ryan stuck around too after that fateful night at the car dealership, we ended up dating and are now engaged to be married in 2018!) In October 2016, I came home from winning the 2016 Rebelle Rally and decided that not only would I be participating in the rally in 2017, I wanted to bring the Jeep. By then the frame had cracked and all the stock components had taken a beating – I knew it was time to start making some serious changes. I wanted a Jeep that was very unassuming and as close to stock-looking as possible. But I also wanted it to be overbuilt, with serious protection and quality parts. I wanted it to drive like a Cadillac on the highway, fly around in the dunes, and still be able to rock crawl on Arizona trails.  I had a long list of “wants” and not a lot of time or funds to get it all done.

I started reaching out to some of my favorite companies and scouring Craigslist, Facebook, and even scavenged in our friends’ garages. We collected Jeep parts from across the country, going as far as Oklahoma for a set of hard doors. We wanted to keep the “old” Jeep running as long as we could but in the meantime we started building.

  • Gathered a HP D30 front axle and rear D44 axle. Had axles straightened, welded on Artec Industries trusses and axle armor along with spring plates, trac bar mounts, knuckle gussets, AR skid plates, tube sleeves, and diff covers with the help of Chris at Lost Industries. Installed Carbon Off-Road chromoly axles front and rear, Motive 4.88 gears, ARB air lockers, along with all new bearings, ball joints, and Powerstop brakes. On the rear axle a special protective “tube” for Terratrip sensor wiring was installed. Axles then got powdercoated. 

  • Used an old transfer case and engine to mock everything up along with a freshly rebuilt AW4 transmission.
  • Cleaned up the frame and cut off all the old brackets. Installed new Artec body mounts and lower link mounts along with Next Venture upper link mount caps and trac bar mounts (including changing the front mount to double shear). Made a transmission mount crossmember to go with the Next Venture flat belly skid plate and sleeved the frame for the skid plate mounting bolts. Plated the shock mounts and added gussets to the spring buckets front and rear. Applied internal frame coating and had the frame powdercoated.

  • Made new short arm links with 2.25” aluminum and large Summit Machine billet flex joints on the lowers, and 1.75” aluminum along with JK size billet flex joints on the uppers.
  • A LOT of cleaning – all the carpets and seats were shampooed, duct work and dash were thoroughly cleaned. While a lot of the parts were “recycled,” everything was cleaned, painted, and shined.
  • Custom designed front winch bumper with steering box skid, flat belly, corner guards, tailgate support, and sliders, all by Next Venture Motorsports. The corner guards and tailgate support were powdercoated to match the white body paint.
  • Designed a roll cage to mimic stock cage but with an A-pillar, spreader bars, roof tubes, corner gussets everywhere and frame tie-ins from front to back. The cage was then powdercoated white to match the body.

At the end of June 2017, I attended a Rebelle Rally training with Nena Barlow in Flagstaff which we decided would be the last run for the “old Jeep.” It was time to start disassembly of “old Jeep” and assembly of “new Jeep.”

  • Connected the frame to the axles using ADS 2.5” smooth body reservoir shocks with clicker adjusters, the new aluminum links with Summit joints, 3” progressive rate springs, Metalcloak trac bars, and Howe steering.

  • Installed engine with all new gaskets, seals, water pump, pulleys, starter, alternator, ignition system with Next Venture lifted motor mounts. All new hoses, radiator, thermostat and housing. McGhie Offroad Racing provided a complete Borla stainless exhaust system.
  • Installed transmission with new cooler and all new wiring for the AW4 tied into the TJ wiring harness – this swap could be a whole write up of its own but suffice it to say, was the most complicated and stressful component of the build.
  • Rebuilt and installed the transfer case with a 6-pinion planetary, wide chain, steel shift forks, 2-lo kit, and JB Conversions super short SYE along with rebuilt/new driveshafts using all Spicer and Neapco components.
  • Hung the fuel tank from the frame via a Savvy aluminum fuel tank skid. Ran all new fuel lines, brake lines, and air lines throughout the chassis.
  • Cleaned up all the body parts and inside coated all the channels in the tub, doors, fenders, tailgate, grill, hood, and windshield frame and then painted everything. Coated inside and underside of the tub with smooth Duraback coating. Installed the tub onto the frame and installed the cage along with the frame tie-ins, floor plates, sliders, corner guards, dash, and rest of the interior, including AC.

  • Installed Terratrip with redundant wheel probes and remote driver display on custom mounts.
  • Mounted the Warn M8000 winch wrapped with a JM Rigging Supply winch rope finished off with Factor 55’s Fairlead 1.0 and Flatlink E. JM Rigging Supply strap, soft shackle, SPA shackle, and sling, a Warn snatch block, and a set of TREDS complete the list of recovery equipment. Mounted the onboard Viair air compressor and tank to operate the ARBs as well as provide air when needed on or off the trail.
  • For safety, a first aid kit was acquired from Black n Blue First Aid, mounted up a pair of fire extinguishers, threw in a fluid spill kit, and made a quick disconnect whip mount for the dunes.
  • A spare for nearly every part on the Jeep was made or gathered and neatly packed in the Jeep in waterproof toolboxes to help save room and stay organized.
  • Finishing off the build was a brand new set of Cooper tires and Raceline Avenger beadlocks.

No stone was left unturned – from new windshield wipers to WeatherTech mats to “new car scent” air fresheners, the Jeep feels better than fresh-off-the-lot. The result? Not only did My partner Teralin and I win the 2017 Rebelle Rally, the Jeep never had a glitch. Not one hiccup, sound, smell, or concern. It took all our spare time, patience, and pennies but I am very proud of what we accomplished in such a short period of time in our little two car garage (technically we moved twice during this time frame, so the work was done in 3 different two-car garages!), while also working full time jobs, selling a house, buying a house, and getting engaged. Ryan is a genius and taught me more than I ever thought I could learn about Jeeps. But we couldn’t have done this build or competed in the rally without a lot of help from marketing partners and friends including:

  • ADS Racing Shocks
  • Be Tini Spirits
  • Next Venture Motorsports
  • ARTEC Industries
  • Carbon Off Road
  • Summit Machine, Inc.
  • JM Rigging Supply
  • Moab 4×4 Outpost
  • Quickloader
  • Factor 55
  • Lost Industries
  • Black n Blue First Aid
  • McGhie Offroad Racing
  • 4 Wheel Parts – Tucson
  • And our helping hands: Sam Verbridge, James Linville, Derek Crase, Bernie Stewart, Dan Foor, Jordan Azlin, and Brian Turner

-Kaleigh Hotchkiss, 2016 and 2017 Rebelle Rally 4×4 Class Winner

Vehicle Build: Kaleigh Hotchkiss’s Rebelle-Winning Jeep TJ2018-06-18T18:23:02-07:00

Where Grit Meets the Dirt

Musings on a trendy word and why we can all use a little practice from Rebelle Founder Emily Miller:

In the business world, there is always a trendy word or term. I can be guilty of overusing them, especially ones like “curate.” But there is a much talked about one these days that I am particularly close to, but don’t often utter – “grit.”

I chuckled as I read Fortune Magazine’s go at it (McGirt, Ellen. “Grit is the New MBA.” Fortune Feb. 1, 2018), which was a good article, but left me with the lingering impression that Harvard and Stanford MBAs are still trying to figure out how to judge it in recruiting practices, and relegating “grit” to people much less fortunate than those with privileged paths. Don’t get me wrong, I’m encouraged they are realizing toughness has Street and Valley credibility.

I see various interpretations beyond the Merriam-Webster version, so I should expand upon my perception of this noun. My definition is “A character trait exemplified by unwavering determination, strength of character and commitment, combined with hard work.” I use the word exemplified because grit is action, not words. So I see grit as noun, adjective, and verb – a truly dynamic descriptor. I also want to add in an important term, endurance. To me, grit over the long haul is what counts.

The beauty of grit is that it is not gender or race specific – it is a character trait. When talked about in the aforementioned article, there were definitely more examples of minorities and women. Maybe it is because we possibly have more opportunities to develop, practice, and refine our grittiness. One question I ask, is grit hardwired in our DNA? I don’t know the answer, but I do believe firmly that grit can built and developed through challenging experiences – planned and unplanned. And if it lies within our genetic makeup (or not), putting ourselves in gritty situations is definitely the way to build it for when we need it most – when the s!*t gets real. And trust me, you don’t want to be on a team and just figuring out if your teammate has grit when it’s go time.

“Grit practice” is one of the reasons I love the Rebelle Rally and feel so compelled to ensure this event happens. It is a platform for women with real grit to shine, and for those who need grit to practice. At the core, the rally is a navigation competition. But it’s also an environment that allows us to put down our connected devices, and learn about and deal with our own less than perfect traits. (No, you don’t build grit by posting gritty Instagrams.) It can be tedious inside and out of the car day after day forcing us to hear how we communicate, how we react and respond when we make mistakes, how we are when we are tired, hangry, frustrated, as well as when we succeed. Are we passive, aggressive, or passive aggressive? Are we self-focused? Team focused? Do we say what we mean, and mean what we say? Do we tiptoe around things to avoid conflict? For those who are open to their own personal and professional growth, it is an opportunity to truly work on our selves. Rebelles must dig deep and find solutions when lost, broken down, or stuck – literally and/or figuratively.

Another gritty component of the Rebelle Rally is our internal team. Each one has grit. They possess extreme grit and I deem these teammates great, not good. It is a large crew – over 60 in number. The challenge of the 10 sleepless days and nights while covering long distances continually reminds me just how critical staff selection is. Someone who is good yet lacking grit weighs heavy on the others. I have a philosophy that anyone can do anything in this environment for 3 or 4 days, but it all changes when you hit the 6, 7, and 8-day mark. Those who have grit start with a balanced demeanor, and only get better and stronger. They rise to the occasion, and seem to thrive off the challenges. Those who lack it start strong and fade as the grind wears on, ultimately becoming a problem because it gets more difficult on a number of levels over the course of the competition. In many environments, there nothing wrong with “good,” but I need “great,” and great has grit.

The world of off-road, dirt, and adventures beyond pavement has been an important place for me to refine my own level of grit. My gritty determination began when I was younger, from wanting to throw a perfect bullet spiral, to throwing my paper route at 10 years old to buy a skateboard, to not even noticing if I had worked an 18-hour day. But it can’t be denied that dirt is truly a platform for building grit. I think back to a funny day at Laguna Seca about 8 or 9 years ago. I was with Brad Lovell and we were spending three days on pavement. We laughed at some of the pavement racers who would walk away with a look of entitlement and disgust if their car were a split second off pace. We joked because we would push our cars for miles if it meant just finishing. Off the beaten path, due to the sheer inability to get help, you are forced through trying to think of every solution possible. At the Rebelle, instead of calling for help and losing the points, these women push themselves so hard and work creatively and collectively to reach the CP or finish line. Tapping out is the absolute last resort.

Some encouragement for your gritty path:

Through my life, I’ve been given some great opportunities and also dealt some harsh criticism. I heard the words “you don’t know when to give up” more than once. Sometimes it was meant as a compliment, and sometimes a deserved slam. At first I took offense and also thought some were totally off-base, because I saw giving up as failure. With age and more experience, what I have learned is when to move on and how to examine and judge failure, lessons I am sure these mentors were trying to instill. I’ve also learned that working through challenges where the stakes are lower has been an excellent growth platform for me personally and professionally, so I can better handle it when the stakes are the most high.

So a few pieces of advice (that I also find myself needing to reread now and again): proactively find opportunities to build your grit, practice makes perfect, do the work all the way to the finish line even when it is exceptionally difficult, don’t be afraid to fail, and if you want grit, surround yourself with people who possess grit. If you want to be great, surround yourself with great, gritty people.

As a woman and a woman who coaches women, a final note. Step up and put yourself out there. Examine your fear of failure and how you define failure, and when opportunities are put in front of you to learn, grow, and test yourself – take them. Don’t expect someone else to be gritty for you.

And now that I have beat this trendy word to death, let’s all step away and go practice. I’ll be heading to the dirt.

-Emily Miller

Where Grit Meets the Dirt2018-04-09T20:01:44-07:00

What Goes into the Cost of the Rebelle

Ever wonder what goes into producing the first women’s off-road navigation rally raid in the United States? A lot more than you think – and we want to give you a peek behind the scenes! From traveling basecamps with showers and bathrooms to a staff complete with qualified safety and a Michelin-star Chef to a world-class competition, we’ve hand-crafted this event just for YOU.  We know you work hard to make the Rebelle happen, so here’s a glimpse into how your registration fees are distributed.

Essentially, we have taken the costs and logistics it would take to do this on your own (bringing your own support team, all your food, etc.) and bundled all the costs together and then divided it amongst a larger group of people to off-set costs and simplify it. Plus, it creates a rally that is doable by a broader range of people with differing experience levels, as well as minimize the impact on land management aspects.

We work hard to make the Rebelle Rally a world-class event with the following commitments:

  • Sustainability for a long lasting event
  • Environmental sensitivity
  • Safety
  • Quality

Most of all, we want this to be turn-key so that people who are unfamiliar with endurance rally don’t have to spend all year sorting out logistics, team travel, etc. And those who are familiar with those logistics, also don’t have to do the same.

Providing a turn-key experience sets ourselves apart from so many events and races. For example, just a four-day driving tour in Baja can run over $6,200 per person. And a one-day rally school can run 1,200 per person and does not include food or lodging.

While a race or rally may have a lower registration cost, it can be deceiving. By the time you have factored in and planned your team, mechanics, media travel, meals, lodging, spare parts, hauling and positioning your fuel, water, etc. you have spent substantial fees and have a complex logistics puzzle to manage. A one-day competition can be 2.5-5+ times more financial commitment than the costs of the entire 10-day Rebelle Rally. Plus, given it is not a race for speed, you will not face the high prep and post event vehicle costs. The Rebelle is designed to be all-inclusive, so the only things you have to worry about during the event is the competition!

STAFF – We have 4 people working on the rally throughout the year full time. 60+ staff work during the event for approximately 10-14 days with each lead working with our staff throughout the year to prepare. We gathered the very best in off-road, overland, rally, adventure, and action sports to bring you the very best event that we can.

COURSE – We built this course for you. It’s our dream course – the course that we want to compete on! We easily spend 1,000+ hours in its design and implementation. We met with countless BLM offices and government offices to make sure our competition is challenging, scenic, doable, and of course, legal. Our course spans over 2,000 km throughout Nevada and California with a significant amount of dollars going towards permits. The course is at the heart of our competition and we want it to be an enjoyable experience and fun to drive.

SAFETY – We have a staff of four search and rescue safety professionals to ensure our competitors and staff stay safe during the event. On the days that we were in more crowded areas, it grew to six. We also had additional EMT-I’s on staff to assist if needed. Everyone’s safety is incredibly important to us and we don’t want to leave anything up to chance.

SHOWERS & TOILETS – There’s nothing like taking a hot shower at the end of the day! Getting enough water out into the desert for hot showers, sinks, and toilets definitely isn’t easy, but they’re part of the amenities we want to provide. Our go-to guy worked on them round the clock, towed them and arranged for their servicing every day. We also made sure all our grey water for cooking, showers, etc. was stored and disposed of properly to miminize our impact on the land.

FOOD – Camping and great food don’t always go hand-in-hand, but we want it to be at the Rebelle. That’s why we’ve recruited Michelin-starred Chef Drew Deckman and his team of five all the way from Valle de Guadalupe to prepare breakfast, lunch and dinner for competitors, staff and media. They not only prepare 600 meals per day for 6 days, they have to pack up and drive all their equipment between every base camp, and set up to do it all over again.

CLEAN DRINKING WATER – Nothing is more important to one’s health on these long days in the desert than staying hydrated! Gallons upon gallons of water follows us from basecamp to basecamp to make sure you are well hydrated in the desert. And while the water truck isn’t driving the Rebelle Rally course, it does have to a little bit of off-roading to meet us at Base Camp!

FUEL – We bring in the best and most conscientious fuel provider in the biz – Amber Fuel Services. A team of four people drive a semi from base camp to base camp ensuring that Rebelles and staff are topped off each day. They even are all smiles when people bang on their door at every hour of the night.

OPERATIONS TEAM – Six people work for 10 days with our trusted vendors to ensure Base Camps are set up, decorated beautifully, and ready to go. They also make sure to do a final sweep once Base Camps to make sure the area is cleaned up, trash free, and even better than when we found it.

MECHANICS – We have a rare combination in our mechanics team…ASE Certified mechanics that can work on a wide range of vehicles, but are also top trail mechanics, gifted with the ability to troubleshoot and McGuyver just about any problem they face. We also have an additional 4 mechanics who are course officials and on call if additional help is needed.

Our scoring, tracking, and maps take extensive planning due to the nature of our competition. This is based on navigation accuracy, not just dropping the flag, so our GIS specialists, tech experts, and scoring gurus work hard to make sure it all comes together when you arrive at the start line. This takes several months with year-round communications.

SCORING & TRACKING TEAM – Our scoring and tracking team is a team of 4 working 24 hours a day for 8 days. We even have people in England and California working remotely to troubleshoot when our team has the off-chance that comms go dark.

MAPS – It takes several months to make the maps using a complex GIS program. And once all the maps are created, we print them. Just to print, it takes 2 people and a specialized printer working around the clock for 5 days printing over 800 beautiful color maps. If you were to print them, each map would cost approx. $30+ per map.

Making Rebelles shine like the rockstars they are:

MEDIA PROFESSIONALS – We have 14 people working over 18 hours per day every day during the event all working to make your stories come to life through photos, news and magazine stories, and video. And our content collectors are world-class, top of their game professionals who are passionate about the Rebelle.

REBELLATION – Our final awards gala is event unto itself. We go the distance to make sure you are able to celebrate and be celebrated by friends, family, sponsors, and fans. So while you are on course, we have a separate team preparing the final event to make sure every detail goes without a hitch.

And the list goes on… We know the Rebelle registration cost is not inexpensive or something to brush off as “no big deal.” But with so many moving pieces to our event, costs do add up. We truly strive to keep costs down while bringing you not only a world-class event, but a world-class experience. It’s not just the competition, it’s about the total package.

So while you are working on your budget and planning, please know that the Rebelle team is working hard for you to have an incredible, memorable, and professional platform to shine!

What Goes into the Cost of the Rebelle2018-04-09T20:02:08-07:00

Rebelle Enduro Challenges

The 2017 Rebelle Rally will present several “Rebelle Enduro Challenge” (REC) sections which are intended to train and test a team’s ability to stay on route and on time while using a roadbook with specific instructions.

  • On Route – Teams will be provided with a roadbook that defines the specific route they must follow. The roadbook contains a series of waypoints with instructions that include mileages, diagrams, headings, and verbiage to communicate the course to be followed.
  • On Time – The roadbook may also define the time it must take to travel the specified route. The roadbook will either specify this time directly or waypoint instructions will prescribe average speeds over given distances so that teams must calculate the time themselves.

Teams are scored on how well they follow the given instructions. Controls will be located at some of the waypoints along the route to mark the passage and/or time of each team. The types of controls are as follows:

  • Start Control – the location where officials release vehicles onto the route at prescribed intervals.
  • Timing Control – a control that records the exact time a team passes that instruction. Teams are not allowed to stop at or near a timing control and must pass without impeding other traffic.
  • Passage Control – a control that records teams that have followed the specified route.

Teams will be notified in advance how many controls will be on each route and how many points each control will be worth. Rebelle Enduro Challenge sections will finish at the next green checkpoint along the route if not stated as ending before that.

REC Basic Terminology:

  • Waypoint – A place that corresponds to a line of information in the roadbook that may include an overall mileage, an incremental mileage, a diagram, written instructions or descriptors, a PAS, and/or a heading.
  • Overall Mileage – The mileage calculated from the start of the Enduro Challenge to the waypoint.
  • Incremental Mileage – The mileage calculated from the last waypoint to the current waypoint.
  • Heading – The compass direction of the road at the end of the instruction.
  • PAS (Prescribed Average Speed) – Indicated at a waypoint by a circled number. The number represents the average speed in KPH (kilometers per hour) that a team must travel to be on time to following instructions. If a team travels at exactly the given PAS then they will pass following instructions at the correct time until the PAS changes.
  • Start Time – The specific time of day which is assigned for a team to start a Rebelle Enduro Challenge section.
  • Key Time – The correct time in hours, minutes, and seconds, to travel a given distance. It may be given directly or may need to be calculated using the PAS and distances given in the instructions (see TSD Equation).
  • True Time – The ideal time of arrival at or passage past an instruction calculated by adding the Key Time to the Start Time. Expressed as time of day.
  • TSD Equation – A significant aspect of all rallying is the relationship between distance, speed, and time. Described arithmetically, these relationships can be expressed as:

If you are given any two of those variable, the third is a matter of multiplication or division.

Rebelle Enduro Challenges2018-02-05T22:29:49-07:00

Reflecting Back, Looking Ahead

Last week was International Women’s Day as part of Women’s History Month. We were all so encouraged by the outpouring of great posts by Rebelles, so I spent a little time reflecting as well as thinking about our future.   So I looked back in my journal where I wrote a lot of things early on that were on my brain — trying to convey what we were working to accomplish. I dug this up:

“I make no promises about what you will personally feel, what you will take away. My honest intention is for you to embrace and enhance your driving and navigation skills, and we will build that platform for you to shine.   I intend for you to gain experience that will enable you and empower you in your future journeys – wherever they may lead you. You will be blazing trails across our American West, kicking ass and taking names, and at the end, we will wash off the dust and celebrate as Rebelles know how. “

It feels really good to circle back to this and say that this is exactly what I still intend.  As we roll toward year 2, I am so happy to see such an incredible camaraderie between Rebelles, and how these women are connecting with each other as well as working to encourage other women to chase their dreams, to sharpen and test their skills, and take on new challenges. I speak on behalf of our whole crew when I say we are stoked that the spirit is alive, is super positive, and growing.

Today, we have many great new teams signing up to be a part of the Rebelle. On behalf of our awesome staff and 2016 teams, we welcome you into the community and can’t wait to share the journey with you!

Thanks to everyone…Rally on,


Reflecting Back, Looking Ahead2018-04-09T20:05:02-07:00

Journey to the Rebelle

– Words from Rebelle Founder Emily Miller

The Beginning:

I’m a car fanatic.  Growing up with my father, he always had a stack of car magazines next to the fireplace that we would study religiously. As a kid, I was taken to see famous architecture and cars – not standing in ride lines at Disneyland.

After I started my business, Soulside Network, a sports marketing company, I was at the National Automobile Museum in Reno, Nevada for a meeting. It was a typical meeting with lovely people who oversee the late Bill Harrah’s car collection – housed within the walls of NAM. Board members were at the table, including a gentleman named Rod Hall. I can say that single meeting would have a major impact on my life.

The meeting that day wasn’t necessarily about the collection, but about my tourism authority client’s mission to promote the Reno Lake Tahoe region as an adventure destination, with NAM, vehicles, and off-road being amongst those adventures. Perfect combination given my passions for adventure, the outdoors, a lifelong love of cars, and “line picking sports” of skiing, snowboarding, and cycling. I was a fair bit younger, and living my dream, combining my hobbies and passions with business.


So Rod got my cell phone number and immediately began calling, asking me to help him on a couple projects. One – to help him sort out his purchase and revival of the Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame. Two – to help his event production company achieve higher vendor status at GM (basically a paperwork process). It began.

Little did I know, at that time Hall was (and is) one of the most winning racers in the history of off-road. Today, at almost 80 years old, he still holds many records including the longest string of consecutive wins (35), racing in every single Baja 1000 since its inception, 23 Baja 1000 class wins, only overall Baja 1000 victory in a stock 4-wheel drive….And the list goes on.

We spent a large amount of time working together, and he was able to observe me tackle a variety of Soulside’s projects.  At the time, they were mostly large sporting events for companies such as Red Bull, that usually involved shutting down streets, and plenty of logistical challenges which required a 24/7 work ethic and “never quit” mentality. Not too dissimilar from Rod. We added projects to our list including several multi-dealer off-road events for GM/Hummer, vehicle launches, etc.

During that time, he taught me how to drive off-road, simplifying the 4×4 lessons, and basically just throwing me in and seeing how I fared. I loved it. A vehicle is a piece of equipment just like a pair of skis, a bike, a snowboard. Once you are strapped in, it becomes an extension of your body. One day, on the way to Starbucks, he announced that he had found his new driver for his factory supported off-road racing team. Me. Whoa. He promised to teach me everything I needed to know, but that I would have to learn how to win. But for anyone who knows Rod, the lesson you must learn first is how to finish.

At first, I co-drove for many races, and got to learn from the best. I was put through the paces, and tested. And then I took the left seat. It was not only an honor, it was at once stressful, intimidating and completely reassuring to have him watching over.  He is an absolute stickler for taking care of the car, and puts the fear of God into you for driving too fast (faster than you need to, and faster than the car can handle long term).   It was more pressure than I let on to, as I took the job and his instructions very seriously. I saw it as a huge responsibility to do exactly as my teacher had taught me. He was my Yoda.


While racing, I got to see amazing places that are off the beaten path, as well as learn so much from Rod. The ins and outs of strategy, how to drive by feeling the vehicle, how to take care of a stock 4-wheel drive, throttle control, line choice, learning backroads, trails, Baja, and the desert from the most seasoned veteran I could hope to find. Another perk was to hear hear his amazing stories from an outstanding career, and the one-liners he is so well known for. ….He then asked me to be a demo driver running hot laps for his Michelin/BFGoodrich Light Truck Tire seminars. Before long, given my day job of producing and promoting events, my role expanded to managing the seminars as well as coaching. Our schedule bulked up to two programs per week, 20 plus events per season running 48 people per week – 450-600 per year – through the series. 7 years.

During this time, I couldn’t ignore the fact that there were almost no women racing, or participating in the seminars. The classes were for sales managers who sold the product and it was the perfect chance to learn more about the product from hands on experience. We were constantly told the female sales managers, although few in number, posted top results. The only thing I could sort out was the intimidation factor. The microscope. The fear of failure. Who knows, but given the fact that women make up half the population, the numbers didn’t make sense. On the other hand, we had plenty of women come to our customer events for the GM/Hummer brand. The women loved the trail drives and coaching. And for the ones that didn’t start out driving, before we knew it, they would be in the driver’s seat with ear to ear smiles waiting for the next challenge.

So I launched a women’s driving event. A one-off bringing top female journalists (not just in automotive) together with top female athletes and put them through the paces we did in a regular driving course. It was a hit. The non-intimidating course, along with the great crew at Rod Hall Events created the right environment for these ladies to not only enjoy the lessons, but excel and immediately improve their competence and confidence. Mission accomplished. Competence and confidence are two attributes that don’t just positively apply to driving – but to life.

Fast Forward:

Fast forward a few more years… On my racing bucket list was a series of cross-country rallies in Africa.   A family member had also mentioned a rally for women she had seen in Morocco that I needed to check out. Rod and I figured it would be a perfect chance for me to get some experience with that part of the world. It wasn’t a race for speed, and the rules were no outside support, so it wouldn’t require a race truck or team. This was a bonus given this was not part of our racing schedule or funded by our sponsors. Racing is a costly sport. So I set about trying to figure out how to go…an extremely difficult task given there were no Americans or British competing, and it was conducted in French.

It was a much more challenging than I expected. The language barrier, the lack of local knowledge, the initial cold shoulder, a vehicle we hadn’t driven before, and the list goes on. But with my dear friend and amazing teammate Wendy, we thrived and rolled with it. We made friends, and loved the opportunity to compete with a field of women. They were tough, talented, and undaunted. Trading GPS for a compass and a map, the way adventurers have navigated for centuries was not only refreshing, but added more skills to our quiver.  We continued and then dedicated ourselves to helping promote and train U.S. and Canadian women to compete.

So Why The Rebelle:

Although I love racing….I love my husband, business, people that work for me, my family, traveling, and my sports. So when Hummer closed down, instead of pursuing another ride, I became committed to continuing to help women learn or sharpen their driving and navigation skills. I want to honor my coach mentor, along with honoring the lessons in life that I’ve learned and continue to learn from wonderful people, places, and experiences, by passing it on to others.  And I absolutely and whole heartedly love watching women fall in love with off-road, test themselves, and grow. The Rebelle is a culmination of this, a combination from a journey across many platforms, competitions, and experiences I’ve been blessed with. The goal is to build a great competition in the U.S., as well as a great environment and movement, shared by a team that deeply loves off-road, rally, sports, and adventure, and wants women to share this same love.  May they pass it along to others and not try to keep it to themselves!

There are many incredible events and rallies across the globe. Some based on speed, some on points, some on particular challenges, some shortest distance, some for women, some for co-ed, and mostly ones that don’t categorize based on gender. Ultimately, I believe most women want to compete in an arena where gender does not dictate classes or outcomes. I know competing against all or almost all-male fields has been good for me and a valuable experience.

Well, if it wasn’t specifically for women, the general trend would prevail – it would be almost entirely comprised of men entering, with a team or two of women, and it would do little to create a women’s community or an environment where women feel they can thrive and connect with other likeminded women. And in the long run, the ones who compete in motorsports will keep doing so, but many who may have been timid or discouraged might feel much more empowered to take on additional challenges and opportunities beyond the Rebelle.

I’ve also been asked, “Why not just do an abbreviated course, 3 days so people can make it work with their schedules and stick their toes in.” My response? The Rebelle is an event where women can feel proud of their accomplishment, spend time focused on their job, push themselves, and be respected for completing it. That doesn’t happen by making it fit in, or sticking a toe in the water. You have to dive in. I’ve definitely learned that the most rewarding and memorable moments in life are the things you have to work for, stumble, fall, fail, and overcome.

This post is dedicated to my driving mentor Rod, and those who have greatly impacted my life – my inner circle, teammates, colleagues, competitors, and role models.  Thank you!

Journey to the Rebelle2019-04-04T10:18:33-07:00

Concept, Competition, & Community

What can you expect from this year’s event?

My life has led me to building the Rebelle, a culmination of life, work, and sport experiences.  I’ve spent many years…days and hours of emotion and personal experience coaching and encouraging women to take up challenges that push them out of their comfort and experience zones.  I’m not promising this will be the hardest thing you have ever done, because the Rebelle has not been “done” yet.  But I envision a rally that is a badge of honor as a competitor.  As with anything in its infancy, we will be learning and refining the Rebelle Rally.  I am always pleasantly greeted by the tenacious competitive spirit of women, so we know you will push the curve, and we vow to respond.

As mentioned in my very first post for the Rebelle, I am not going to tell you what you will feel and what you will personally take away.  However, I can tell you what we are working on and planning. The mission is laid out – to build a platform for you to shine, to embrace and or enhance your skills.

A couple words come to mind over and over again. Competence and confidence.
Through training and participating, I believe even the most seasoned woman can gain and grow in this department.  Despite any amount of experience, additional “seat time” in a new setting just adds to the tools in the quiver.

The driving is fun!  This is not beat your brains out driving, but “Mmmm….I could do this for the rest of my life” kind of driving.  If you haven’t already fallen in love with off-road driving, you will.  You weren’t just meant to drive that capable 4×4 in rush hour traffic jams.  You’ve got a lot of ground to cover, but with speed taken out of the equation, you will need to settle in to a comfortable pace that keeps your car happy and doesn’t outdrive your navigators ability to use traditional techniques.  (Penalties for speeding? Check!)  If you want to score well, ensure you have excellent throttle control, accurate tire placement, and know how to drive sand.  And in case our deserts receive much needed rain, add mud skills to the list.

The navigation will be interesting and challenging.  One of the primary CP scoring systems is one I borrowed from my love of skiing and snowboarding.  The green, blue, black markings are designed to help you understand the level of navigation challenge.  For the beginner, you will definitely be able to reach CPs, but try your hand at the more difficult ones to find.  For the intermediate and expert, you will have to really know where you are to get the black CPs.  There is no marker, no big waving flag. You will have to signal via the handheld tracker once you believe you are in the designated radius of the coordinate.  The ultimate goal?  Create a playing field where women possessing a wide range of skills can compete together, yet challenge themselves.  Oh…and do you drive up to every CP?  No.  So make sure you have some cardio in your workout routine.

The terrain is stunning.  Every day I have pre-run the routes, I stop and remark about the beauty of our country.  I’ve spent time racing and hurrying past these spots, but adding in the element of “no tech navigation” forces you to really read what you see.  To soak it up and absorb it.  Nothing better than having 7 focused days with no cell phone, no Facebook, no Instagram, no election coverage, to celebrate the awesomeness of our U.S. deserts.

I want you to feel like a part of something bigger.  We have assembled a very capable team (of whom you will meet over the next 6 months), and we hope to provide a warm environment that also fosters a positive competition.  Who says you can’t have fun while being absolutely serious about the task at hand.  We hope you walk away with lifelong friends.  But whatever you feel, it’s yours.  We can’t dictate it, but we are committed to a vision and vibe that we hope permeates throughout the competition and community.

So welcome to our competition, and welcome to our community.  May it be one helluva ride.

Concept, Competition, & Community2017-04-20T17:15:11-07:00