2014 BMW GS Trophy Final Report
The 2014 BMW GS Trophy in North America presented many challenges throughout the seven days. When it wrapped up, the riders from 19 different countries covered nearly 1,500 miles in a loop around the Canadian Rockies, starting and ending at the Kananaskis Guest Ranch in Exshaw, west of Calgary.
And dominating this year’s fourth edition of the BMW GS Trophy – an event that began in 2008 with a mere five teams but grew to 16 in 2014 – was Team Central and Eastern Europe (CEEU).
The team, consisting of Wojciech Zambrzycki, Maciej Gryczewski and Karel Rahcek, led from day one, taking victory in many specials and both photo competitions. CEEU finished with 276 points, 49 ahead of South Africa in second place, while Team France came in third with 198 points.
As for Team USA, they finished fifth overall with 174 points, eight points behind Argentina.
The final day, dubbed the “coming home ride” by Chief Instructor Tomm Wolf, was a celebration of the Canadian Rockies. Saturday’s ride took the teams through the Rockies’ scenic and deserted gravel roads across picturesque mountain passes before heading north back into Alberta on paved roads.
And just like every other day, there were several specials thrown in for good measure, including an early morning “car pull” in sub-zero temperatures and using a vintage Dodge; a “bear turn” team relay special deep in the forest; and a trials-based “Final Skills Challenge” back at base camp that even include blindfolded riding, BMW Motorrad reports.
A final dinner by a roaring campfire included a prize-giving ceremony where all 16 teams received awards for participation. As GS Trophy organizer Michael Trammer put it: “All the teams are winners in my opinion. It doesn’t matter if you don’t finish among the top teams because we have all become one big team together.”
This was a view shared by Head of BMW Motorrad Marketing Ralf Rodepeter, who added: “It was a great experience here in Canada, from the bikes to the landscapes to the competitors and all the team working hard behind the scenes to make it happen. When you see that all the GS bikes are perfectly ok after more than 2,000 kilometers of the toughest riding imaginable, then it’s really impressive. It’s also great to see how a bike like the GS is unifying these people from all over the world who came to Canada to ride the GS Trophy.”
The final word went to Vice President of BMW Motorrad Sales and Marketing Heiner Faust, who added: “I don’t know of any other event like the GS Trophy. You really can’t compare one Trophy to another because they have all been fantastic events in their own way. The whole idea behind the Trophy is to go to a different nation every two years, and the riding and scenery have been stunning here in Canada.
“We are all here together, but a much wider GS community has been following online, making the GS Trophy the most important event for us in terms of media coverage. Every GS Trophy is for sure a hard act to follow and we certainly raised the bar high with this 2014 edition.”
BMW Motorrad GS Trophy 2014 Final Standings: