The BMW GS Trophy 2010 is over. With an arduous final day and with the points totaled, the winner is Team UK. In second place is Team South Africa with Team Nordic in third.
The final day included a trials special test in the Country Trax farm using BMW R1200GS motorcycles. This was followed by 300 km (160 mile) long journey back to Johannesburg where the results of the recent photo competition were announced. It was a warm, sunny day with temperatures well over 20º C (68º F). The trials were carried out across the seesaw, over gnarly tree trunks and around different obstacles from steering stop to stop. Team South Africa got a convincing victory here while Team Nordic team took second and Team UK third. This turned the points table on its head because Team South Africa went ahead to take a one point lead in the overall standings coming into the final competition.
The photo competition was a huge success. In this third and final round over 10,000 votes were cast. The winner was Team Canada with almost a third of all votes. But Team UK was lucky and got the second-most votes and, also important for the Brits, Team Nordic placed third ahead of Team South Africa. This gave Team UK a total of 152 to 151 points for Team South African. And only two points behind them was Team Nordic to finish third. After seven days of competitions, the first three teams were only separated by three points!
“What can I say? Job done!” Said Alastair Allan of Team UK. “Great feeling, loads of fun. As a good friend of mine says, it might have been only one point but a win’s a win, and that’s all there is to it. It’s been a fantastic time. We made a brilliant team, we all got on like a house on fire and that’s what made it a great event to take part in. And I think the fact that the team got on so well is the reason the result ended up as it did.”
Special Test Results:
Trials: 1st Team South Africa, 2nd Team Nordic, 3rd Team UK
Photo Competition: 1st Team Canada, 2nd Team UK, 3rd Team Nordic
Our best impressions!
Team Nordic: Börres Skiaker: “Every day has been a really good time, and every minute has been a good time. Me and my colleagues in Team Nordic have enjoyed the trip, the competition, the meeting with the other people, it’s been great!”
Team Italy: Marco De Muri: “Our favorite moment was when we reached this village up in the mountains on Day Four (we submitted a photo from that into the second photo competition). We were stopped for a special test and we had time to meet the children from the village. They had nothing but their smiles, they were amazing.”
Team USA: Shannon Markle: “The best bit was hanging with my buddy Iain Glynn. That’s number one. We’d never met before the GS Challenge, but when we met it felt like we were soul mates. It was also my first real experience of meeting so many nationalities – it was really cool to see how enthusiastic the Spanish and the Italians are, full throttle through everything! And towards the end we got to understand it wasn’t about who was first, second and third – everyone had won just by being here.”
Team Japan: Shigechika Aikawa & Tohru Tamiya: “For us, the help from the other teams and BMW staff was our highlight. If Team South Africa and Team Germany had not helped us on days three and four then we would not have been able to complete our journey. Also on day three in the deep sand Shigechika broke the gear mechanism on his bike and the mechanics repaired it overnight. Then on day four he crashed and injured his foot and the medical staff helped him, he could not have ridden without their support.”
Team Canada: Dominique Lemaire: “I think it’s a culmination of events. I came here with the intention of enjoying myself and I think that’s been achieved. I wish that it could carry on but I’m also at the same time glad it’s over and that I made it here safely. We touched a little bit of everything and you really get to leave here with a taste of what South African is, we’ve been in places I could never go. It was really something else.”
Team UK: Kevin Hammond: “This morning we said to ourselves ‘what will be will be’. We thought we’re all winners, it’s been a fantastic trip, we’ve done 2000km, everyone’s back in safe and it’s been absolutely fantastic. The best bit for me was reaching Ponta do Ouro and turning the corner and seeing the Indian Ocean. It was my 50th birthday, we’d ragged the bikes through the sand and we sat there having a cold beer.”
Team Alps: Johannes de Cuitiis: “The whole week was great. The first thing is not to win, but see new things, to help each other. But then yesterday we had that beautiful position – a win – and this was a very good push forward, we can win, it’s possible!”
Team Spain: David Borcha Mateo: “We have a team with good feeling, we come here to have an adventure with riders from other parts of the world and it was complete. We had adventure, we had good tracks and roads, we had accidents (sometimes it is necessary!). And we have good food, good feeling. The Spanish people are always laughing, having fun, making friends, we enjoy a lot, it’s a pity we can’t do some things’ better, but we are happy and really satisfied. The marshals, the organization — everything is more than perfect.”
Team Germany: Dirk Remmel: “Probably the comedy of the towing test. There was a lot of adrenaline involved. I remember going for speed, speed, speed and there were cows blocking the track and I could hear only crying from him (Werner Modelmann) behind! I remember thinking we needed only one cow to move to make space for us, and she did at the last moment. You know we did so much this week I can’t remember it all. I can’t wait to go home, to go online to find out what we did do!”
Team South Africa: Roger Kane Berman: “That sand ride with the Japanese was the hardest day’s riding I’ve ever had. But they were so grateful and so it was so rewarding, it was a battle with the language and the cultures. It was an amazing ride, so intense, we went through so many emotions in the course of a day, it’ll stand out in my mind for a very long time”
Tomm Wolf, Co-organizer of the GS Trophy: “Everyone is at home, standing on their own two feet and smiling – I’m really happy now. My really tough part was mid-week crossing the border for Mozambique and then reaching the Indian Ocean. I was so happy to reach there – we’d called the day ‘Mission Ponta’ – and after that the most difficult part was over. We’re looking to 2012 now. People have asked can we better this? I think we can. Can you imagine breakfast in Machu Pichu or canoeing on Lake Titikaka? I think we can find nice places.”
GS Trophy 2010, Final Results
1. UK, 152 points
2. South Africa, 151
3. Nordic, 149
4. Canada, 124
5. USA, 107
6. Alps, 105
7. Spain, 101
8. Germany, 1995
9. Italy, 86
10. Japan, 54