For the first time in its history, the 2014 BMW Motorrad International GS Trophy will take place in the northern hemisphere, with 16 teams composed of participants from at least 18 nations set to rendezvous in Canada to compete in this friendly competition dedicated to the famous GS spirit.
Having first begun in Tunisia in 2008 with just five countries involved, the biennial GS Trophy gathered momentum in 2010, where twice as many teams lined up to represent their nations and do battle in the heat and dust of southern Africa. For 2012, the third – and biggest edition of the GS Trophy to date – brought 15 teams together for a seven-day, 1,200-mile (2,000-km) adventure in Chile and Argentina.
With the South American event fresh in the memory of all those who participated and the hundreds of thousands who followed each day of the Trophy online, the organizers’ thoughts soon turned to 2014 and finding a location that had the potential to reach new heights in the Trophy success story.
Following a period of sustained and detailed research, the destination of western Canada was decided on, with the provinces of British Columbia and Alberta chosen to host the fourth BMW Motorrad International GS Trophy. While details are still being finalized, expect the Trophy to travel between Vancouver and Calgary, and to cross the Rocky Mountains.
So far, teams from Germany, France, Italy, United Kingdom, Russia, Austria/Switzerland, CEEU (Central Eastern Europe), USA, Mexico, Latin America, Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, Japan and Korea will join host nation Canada early in September 2014 for this nine-day ‘Olympic Games’ for GS riders from all around the world.
Finally being able to make the announcement about the 2014 event is a huge relief for GS Trophy organizer Michael Trammer, who comments, “People have been asking me about this for a long time so I’m delighted to now be able to say that we’re going to Canada for our fourth international event. It’s an amazing country – the second biggest in the world – and we’ve worked closely with our Canadian BMW Motorrad colleagues to plan locations and itineraries so that riders from many different cultures and backgrounds, but all sharing the same love for GS bikes, will be able to ride these wonderful bikes in such incredible landscapes.
“Furthermore, I’m delighted to say that next year, all participants will be using the liquid-cooled R1200GS to contest the Trophy, which will be the first time that the competition is featuring the large-capacity travel enduro. For the three previous events, we’ve used the outstanding F800GS which has served us extremely well, but we feel it’s now time to demonstrate the ability and agility of our big sports boxer as the ultimate ‘go anywhere’ motorcycle.”
For BMW Motorrad Canada’s Motorcycle Manager Norm Wells, hosting the 2014 event is a great opportunity to show GS enthusiasts from around the world the rugged beauty of this huge, densely forested but sparsely populated nation that spans six time zones, contains 20 percent of the world’s fresh water and the majority of the world’s polar bears!
“It’s great for our GS community that the GS Trophy is coming to Canada next year,” he said. “We’ve supported this big international event with teams in 2010 and 2012, but we’ve also had our own ‘GS Challenges’ on the east and west side of the country for several years prior to this. A BMW GS bike is the perfect machine on which to explore Canada, and although we’ll only be showing our international visitors a tiny part of what our nation has to offer, you can be sure that routes and challenges will be chosen so that all participants get the best possible experience of the ‘big country’ next September.”