Monday, 21 March 2016

GS TROPHY SOUTHEAST ASIA QUALIFIER 2015 (30 OCT - 02 NOV 2015)






































BMWS GET DIRTY: BMW MOTORRAD GS TROPHY SOUTHEAST ASIAN QUALIFIER 2015


By Wahid Ooi Abdullah (Cycle World Malaysia)

























When a prestigious motorcycle manufacturer such as BMW makes enduro and dual-purpose bikes, you can bet your last Ringgit that they were built to be tough, reliable and go anywhere. But while we know the likes of the F 650 GS, F 700 GS, F 800 GS and the ubiquitous R 1200 GS are built for such purposes, do the owners of these bikes actually get them into the rough?


























To perhaps drive that point home, plus allowing the owners to unlock the true potentials of their German steeds, BMW has been organizing the Motorrad GS Trophy for a time now.
The Trophy takes place bi-annually and the fifth edition will be held in Southeast Asia from 28th February to 5thMarch 2016. 19 international teams will participate this time and the 2016 affair also marks the first time women riders will take part in a special category.
























As such The BMW Motorrad GS Trophy Southeast Asia Qualifier 2015 was conducted recently from 30th October to 1st November 2015 to select the Southeast Asian representatives who will compete in the main event in Chiang Mai in 2016. The qualifier was held together with BMW Motorrad’s lifestyle event called BMW Motorrad Days Thailand at the BMW Motorrad Enduro Park in Bangkok, Thailand.
The event officially got underway with a welcome dinner for all the participants and officials at the posh Muse Hotel in downtown Bangkok. Head of BMW Motorrad Malaysia, Mr. Owen Riley and event organizer, Tomm Wolf addressed the attendees. A group of singers then entertained everyone with elegant renditions of a few famous arias.




























We headed to the Enduro Park early the next morning.













BMW GS Trophy legend and organizer, Tomm Wolf, who was the Chief Judge of the qualifier, laid out a challenging course for the competitors. All competitors had to complete a total of 20 challenges, divided into 11 on Day One and 9 on Day Two.













The Enduro Park had everything an enduro rider could dream off: Surfaces that ranged from hard-packed to soft mud; loose gravel and sand; jumps; water crossings. Various hazards were installed to make things even more, shall we say, interesting.













Power and speed weren’t the main factors being judged here, instead it was about the rider’s overall control of his/her bike. As this was the case, some of the challenges included: Getting off the bike and pushing it over logs length-wise; pulling a banana from the tree and dropping it into a bucket; grabbing a (small) traffic cone on one side of the bike and placing it on top of another cone on the other side; doing circles in an enclosed area without putting a foot down; grabbing one part after another on a bike with just one hand (the other hand and body are not allowed to touch the bike); turning the bike in a circle with the rider off the bike by regulating the clutch with one hand; crossing a deep water hazard and so forth. Points were deducted for misses or mistakes, like putting a foot down, for example. The winner is the participant who completed the course the fastest and had the most points left.















These challenges may seem sadistic but again, they are to challenge and thereby teach BMW riders on how they could control their bikes.
Day 1 concluded with the qualification of participants from other Asian countries. The park then came alive for the Motorrad Days event, starting from the late afternoon with  a water-skiing and jet ski exhibition, all the way into the night with an excellent live band playing classic rock favorites. BMW also displayed their stable of bikes and cars, including the Mini. There were also test rides available.














Day 2 of the qualifiers was set for the Malaysian contingent as it was the largest.
A total of 6 Malaysians took part in the qualifier. They were Eimran Bin Jettey, Dato’ Hamzah Bin Mazlan, Khaizatul Akmar Binti Zabidin (the only woman in the Malaysian contingent), Mohd. Aswade Bin Ali, Mohd. Faizal Shukree, and Dr. Suhaimi Bin Said.
























Although bikes were provided at the BMW Motorrad Enduro Park, our Malaysian participants decided to ship in their personal bikes for the event. (Here’s your proof that BMW owners do use their enduro and dual-purpose bikes as intended by the manufacturer.)
Mohd. Faizal Sukree rode an F 650 GS and was the victor at the end of it all and he will be joining Tommy Lee from Singapore and Peerapat Woratham from Thailand for the finals.























Do us proud, Mohd. Faizal! Malaysia Boleh!
BMW Motorrad also gave the Malaysian media a taste of part of the enduro park at the conclusion the qualifiers.

Watch Video: 







Video BMW Motorrad Malaysia, click below:



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