Joe Pyrek

Age: 29

Hometown: Richmond, VA, USA

Irrational Fear: sock puppets

Van Halen Lead Singer Preference: David Lee Roth

Previous Rally Experience: Indian auto-rickshaw Challenge 2007 + Mongol Rally 2009 + Fun Times-a-Plenty with Mopeds 2003-Present + Drove his girlfriend’s Prius to dinner the other night.

# Stamps in Current Passport: 76

Most likely to be eaten by:  boomslang

Predictions: at least 2 flat tires, 4 bribe attempts, 1 parasite, 42 shoes full of sand, no more than one shower per week, at least 3 run-ins with hippos


Joe’s skills, interests, and passions, much like his travels are all over the map. By day he funds his heroin-like addiction for travel by working as a financial analyst, currently contracting at Capital One. When not working Joe can usually be found at Lakeside Volunteer Rescue Squad, where he is the treasurer, or tinkering with mopeds as part of Richmond’s self-proclaimed “toughest moped gang,” The Hell’s Satans. This love of mopeds coupled with a short work stint in India in 2006 led Joe to go back to India in 2007 to participate in an autorickshaw rally.

That rally in turn led him to pursue more ridiculous and outrageous adventures such as the 2009 Mongol Rally in which he participated, utilizing a pink ice cream truck. It was on the Mongol Rally that he and Scott Brills came to be friends. Like Scott, Joe also met his Mongol Rally demise at the hands of post-Soviet Tajikistan’s “roads,” or lack thereof. However, undeterred, Joe and his Mongol Rally team, The Rolling Cones, would not accept defeat and through the use of planes, trains, and automobiles made it to Ulaanbaatar in one piece (plus several beards). It is this same determination which he hopes will carry him and the rest of his Shoebaru teammates from “Goodwood to Good Hope” in 2012.