Team Germany came into the final day with a solid 18-point advantage and they remained steady and consistent through to the very last test to take the victory in the 2012 BMW Motorrad GS Trophy. It was a test of nerves in the final day, as rain through the afternoon meant the title-deciding final trials test was very slippery – and with double points on offer, one false move could have ruined their chances.
Day seven started at the lakeside resort of Magma Lodge in Pucón, Chile, with an early detour to visit the volcano Villarica, where the riders ascended off-road to about 5,000 feet (1500 m) above sea level, just below the snow line of the 9,320 feet (2840 m) volcano.
The riders then traveled north stopping off for a special test called the Indiana Jones that involved crossing a rope bridge with full cups of water – looking for a fast time with minimum spillage. Here Team France found the right combination to take the win, ahead of Team CEEU, while Team Germany were able to limit damage to their lead with a third place.
After this came a technical riding section of 93 miles (150km), on gravel roads, as the course weaved through valleys and forestry, some of it petrified by recent volcanic activity.
The GS Trophy’s arrival at the Trailanqui Resort in the afternoon signaled the end of the circuitous adventure that took in nearly 1200 miles (2000 km) over seven days of riding in the Patagonian mountain regions of Chile and Argentina. A remarkable journey of discovery with nearly every extreme of weather, from searing sun and choking dust on day one, through to the saturating wetness of the rainforest on day five.
The event was far from over, however, with the two last tests to come. The first involved pulling an ancient horse cart with an R1200GS – something all but two of the teams achieved without penalty. This was followed by the traditional GS Trophy curtain closer – the trials test. Here Team USA took a surprise win, but in placing second, ahead of France in third, the German team were confirmed the winners of the 2012 edition of the GS Trophy.
Tobi Weiser, Team Germany: “I could start crying, that is for sure, words can’t describe the feeling, it is just wonderful.
“Before we came we didn’t have a clue that we could win. Even in the first days we could not see how we could win – to see the French guys riding so well we were not sure we were of that level or how we could match them.
“What I can say is that I love the GS Trophy, because we’ve met so many beautiful people, beautiful friends in this one week, it’s amazing, I love it. This morning I said before we started, ‘it’s not important to win, we got here, we had fun and it is what it is.’”
Heiner Faust, head of sales and marketing BMW Motorrad:
“The GS Trophy is a big part of the culture of our company, for our GS customers, our GS community and GS friends. And so it’s been amazing to see these people riding through these amazing countries, over the rough trails, through the rainforests and the amazing scenery – and most importantly having fun together. This means a lot for us.”
Tomm Wolf, GS Trophy co- organizer: “It was unbelievable, after the huge pressure and four months of hard work on location, it’s great to have seen the group ride through our event, it´s unbelievable. When I came here I didn’t think it was possible to put on an event as good as this, but now it’s over and all the riders – except Marc-André Octeau who was injured on day three – have come back safely. That is an achievement.”
1. Germany, 256 pts
2. France, 238
3. Italy, 222
4. Argentina, 215
5. Alps, 202
6. USA, 201
7. Canada, 197
8. CEEU, 196
9. UK, 188
10. Latin America, 181
11. South Africa, 178
12. Russia, 149
13. Brazil, 120
14. Spain, 109
15. Japan, 89
Short video from BMW Motorrad of the group heading up volcano Villarica: