Munich. The fifth BMW Motorrad International GS Trophy, the 2016 Southeast Asia edition came to a close, after seven hard days’ riding, with a spectacular finale on Saturday, March 5. With the competition still in the balance right up to the final special test, it was a tense finish – decided in favour of Team South Africa who kept their nerve to secure the nation’s first victory in the event after twice placing runner-up. Let´s have a look back on a week packed with high temperatures, offroad riding, friendly people and adventures in the jungle.
The fifth edition brought together 19 teams (comprising 57 riders plus 19 embedded journalists) representing 25 nations for a seven-day over-1300 kilometre trek through the forests, jungles and mountains of Northern Thailand. The riding was possibly the most technical yet, as the riders guided their
BMW R 1200 GS bikes along single-track trails more akin to enduro racing than adventure competition. Temperatures matched those of the South African edition in 2010 – running into the high 30ºC range – and with high humidity it was one of the hotter, sweatier GS Trophies!
The start came at the Rim Doi Resort, in Chiang Dao at 8.00am on the morning of February 28, and while unseasonal heavy rain had washed out the planned course for day one, the riders were still treated to some excellent off-road trails before hitting the first – and possibly physically the toughest – special test, ‘Broken Bridge’. Such themes are by now familiar, long days in the saddle with always some challenging riding, combined with special tests that challenge the riders’ teamwork, their problem solving skills, often their strength, as well as their bike riding. As ever, the riders would reach the nightly bivouacs well-exercised.
The 2016 edition again saw the event grow, with 114 motorcycles on the tour and an entourage of close to 200 people (riders, marshals, medics, caterers, organisers and more). As ever, the motorcycles – BMW R 1200 GS and GSA – were up to the task; occasional puncture repairs on the trail tested the practical skills of the riders while crash damage gave the BMW Motorrad mechanics a few hours work each evening; but the engines and chassis never gave up. The latest GS bikes were praised for their ease of use, great rider aids and sheer ruggedness. As before, the competitors were won-over by the bike’s character as much as the sheer capability of these iconic machines.
Team South Africa wins.
Team South Africa has been one of the strongest teams in every edition of the GS Trophy since their debut in 2010. They missed out on the win then, by just one point, and came close again in 2014, so the win this year was especially savoured. Thorough preparation meant the team were always in contention – they were in fact the team to beat – but John Harris, Charl Moolman and Byron Coetsee were winners on every level, winning as many friends as points.
Team UK and Team Germany were their nearest competitors and the unrelenting efforts of the two teams kept the outcome of the event in question right up to the very last test. And while the strength of Team South Africa could not be denied, it was fitting that the runner-up position should be shared by these two great teams (Team UK having won in 2010, Team Germany in 2012).
Three new teams took part in 2016. Team China made an impact right from the start, having given up their international air flights and instead choosing to ride to the event on their own GSs! Four days in the saddle saw them ride up to the Shang-ri La Hotel in Chiang Mai for the official opening – along with some 60 supporters, most also BMW-mounted. They made quite probably the most impressive entrance to the event yet. And Team China proved a competitive team, too, strong and well-practiced they took an impressive 7th place on their debut.
Team Southeast Asia might have been less successful, but nonetheless brought much colour to the event, good humour, and found they enjoyed their ‘home’ course as much as the visitors.
The third new team were the International Female Team. Easily the most popular team in the event, Stéphanie Bouisson (France), Morag Campbell (South Africa) and Amy Harburg (Australia) showed bike-handling skills equal to the men (in fact sometimes superior). They would have finished higher if they hadn’t been so punished by the strength-based tests, but as Amy reported, they were never defeated – not even in lifting the 238kg GS over a 1.5-metre tree trunk – it just took a little more time for them than for the men. The team was much welcomed by the men, and cheered-on all the way, but again as the girls explained, this was the same for all teams – every team supports everyone. It’s truly a band of brothers – and sisters.
At the finish, Team South Africa’s Byron Coetsee spoke for his teammates about their win:
“Relief is the first emotion, then happiness. With South Africa’s record in the event – we’ve come second twice, even losing by just one point – then to finish like this is like the weight of the world has been lifted from our shoulders. We share this moment with Roger, Gerber, Warren and all the previous team members from South Africa!”
Tuesday, 15 March 2016 13:23 Published in Reports, Results & Points
The 2016 AMA Pro Flat Track Grand National Championsip season got underway at the Daytona Flat Track with a doubleheader on March 10-11. Among the 50-plus riders in GNC1 and the 80-plus in GNC2, six Canadians were on hand to try their luck on the slick short track.
Tuesday, 15 March 2016 11:56 Published in Reports, Results & Points
MINNEAPOLIS (March 3, 2016) — Indian Motorcycle, America’s first motorcycle company, today announced the new 2016 Indian Springfield. Named after the birthplace of Indian Motorcycle and designed for a pure riding experience, the Indian Springfield is a soulful and versatile new addition to the 2016 lineup.
Thursday, 03 March 2016 10:35 Published in Industry News
Last week the big fat new DOUBLE ISSUE of Inside Motorcycles started dropping into readers' mailboxes and landing on store shelves. Pick your copy up today to find out about the best new bikes of 2016 and a whole lot more!
Wednesday, 20 January 2016 11:22 Published in Current Issue
January 4, 2016 (Toronto,ON) - Yamaha Motor Canada is not slowing down when it comes to releasing new and exciting models. All-new for 2016, the XSR900 blends Yamaha’s world-class engineering with standout neo-retro sport styling, creating a new type of machine for riders looking for an authentic and honest motorcycle that doesn’t sacrifice performance.
Monday, 04 January 2016 16:01 Published in Industry News
@DucatiUSA • @official_EICMA • Milan, Italy, 16 November 2015 – Streamed live all around the globe, the Ducati World Première 2016 saw the Bologna-based motorcycle manufacturer unveil its new bikes for the 2016 range on the eve of EICMA 2015. Buoyed by the just-achieved target of 50,000 bike sales and brimming with new products, innovative technology and plans for the future, it's a solid, confident Ducati that's heading to the event in Milan. These are true dream bikes: ready to thrill the swathes of enthusiasts soon to descend on the 73rd edition of the International Motorcycle Show to be held at the Milan-Rho trade fair from 19 to 22 November.
Monday, 16 November 2015 12:42 Published in Industry News
Breaking news! Ducati announces six new models at EICMA! Panigale 959, Multistrada 1200 Enduro, Scrambler Flat Track Pro and more!
On Monday morning Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali presented to the world the new 2016 models created in the Ducati factory in Bologna. Full details will follow, but here's what we know so far...
Monday, 16 November 2015 11:13 Published in Industry News
MARKHAM, ON (Oct. 15, 2015) – Honda is pleased to announce its 2016 CBR lineup, with the aggressive new styling of the CBR500R leading the way. Almost 25 years after the introduction of the CBR900RR, Honda’s modern sport bikes have always placed performance hand in hand with reliability.
“Since the introduction of both of the CBR500 and CBR300 models, we’ve seen a continuous increase in their popularity. The updated 2016 CBR500R is a striking new take on the larger of the two models. Both draw from the successful racing DNA of the CBR family but in entry level packages that have large appeal,” said Derek Verheyen, National Sales Manager, Motorcycle Division.
With all-new styling that offers a sharper, more aggressive look and refinements like LED headlights and taillights, the new CBR500RA adds great curb appeal to legendary performance and reliability. Other updates include a new muffler design, an adjustable front brake lever, optimized gear change feel, a hinged fuel cap on a larger fuel tank and better suspension. For increased security, the CBR500RA now uses a wave ignition key. The inline twin 500cc engine offers accessible power output that smoothly revs up to redline, while emphasizing low to mid-range torque for real world usability.
Genuine accessories are also available for the new CBR500RA. Those include heated grips, a U-lock, seat bag, hugger-type chain case, rear seat cowl, tank pad, AC socket and a carbon-look front fender. Also available in non-ABS
CBR500RA: Matte Gunpowder Black Metallic, Millennium Red, Pearl Metalloid White
CBR500R: Millennium Red
Long heralded for its excellent handling and stellar realworld performance, Honda’s legendary CBR100RR is back for 2016 with a 999cc liquid-cooled, inline four-cylinder engine, assisted slipper clutch and twin-spar aluminum chassis. It’s offered in standard and ABS configurations. The SP version with stand-out premium features for track-day enthusiasts, including fully adjustable Öhlins suspension, Brembo front brakes, Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SC tires, a special lightweight subframe and solo seat cowl.
CBR1000RA: Matte Black Metallic
CBR1000RR SP: Repsol Special
Returning to Honda’s 2016 lineup in a new Black/Ross White colour is the versatile CBR600RR, comprising an impressive package of handling, power, compact size and overall performance. Whether customers are looking to tear up the track, carve through the canyons, or commute to work, this versatile middleweight sport bike can handle it all. The popular and race-proven CBR600RR is available with Honda’s revolutionary Combined Anti-Lock Braking System (C-ABS), offering added confidence under less-than-ideal conditions.
• Colour: Black/Ross White
Value-oriented riders desiring sporty but user-friendly performance will be pleased with the return of Honda’s popular CBR300RA, the smallest-displacement model in Honda’s sport bike lineup. Known for being an incredible value, the CBR300R impresses with enough versatility that it also appeals to experienced riders. A single-cylinder engine with counterbalance shaft and a wide powerband combines with a narrow cross section to provide a light, nimble motorcycle that boasts excellent fuel economy. Customers can opt for either the ABS or non-ABS version.
CBR300RA: Lemon Ice Yellow/Matte Black, Candy Orange
CBR300R: Millennium Red
ABOUT HONDA CANADA
Honda Canada Inc. was established in 1969 and is the sole distributor of Honda motorcycles, scooters, ATVs and
side-by-sides in Canada. The Honda Canada Motorcycle Division is responsible for sales, marketing, and operational
activities for these products through authorized Honda dealers. For more information on Honda Canada powersports
products, please visit: motorcycle.honda.ca. (All information subject to change without notice.) Pricing and
availability to be announced through honda.ca
Friday, 16 October 2015 10:46 Published in Industry News
@HondaCA • @HondaPowerCA • MARKHAM, ON. (May 13, 2015) – Honda today announced the return of the CRF recreational family of motorcycles to
suit the needs of a wide range of off-road enthusiasts. Along with the off-road line up returns a pair of street models:
the category-shattering NM4 as well as the efficient PCX150 scooter.
CRF TRAIL MODELS RETURN
In 2016, the CRF family of recreational models returns in its entirety. From the CRF-F series, a line that has been
instrumental in getting riders started, to the woods riding fun of the CRF250X and CRF450X the CRF brand offers
options for all riders from beginner through to racer.
With an impressive enduro-racing win record, including
victory at the recent inaugural SCORE Baja Sur 500, the
CRF450X is a hit with trail riders and off-road racers, who
love its proven strength and durability. Inspired by the
CRF450R, the X-model is user-friendly and well suited for
a wide variety of off-road terrain, from wide open fire road
to single track. It has a smooth power delivery with plenty
of low-end torque and excellent throttle response, and the
superior ergonomics maximize comfort for long days in
the saddle. The bike delivers exceptional handling, thanks
in part to works-style front and rear suspension, as well
as Honda’s Progressive Steering Damper, which improves
cornering and increases stability at high-speed. Also
standard are a gear-driven counterbalance and electric start.
A hit with the enduro/trail crowd, the CRF250X is based on
Honda’s successful quarter-liter motocross machine, but
with off-road-ready features like a headlight, push-button
electric start, wide-ratio five-speed transmission and
T-ring-sealed chain. The bike is powered by a lightweight,
liquid-cooled four-stroke Unicam engine, while suspension
is handled by a 47mm inverted Showa cartridge fork and
Pro-Link single shock. Also standard are works-type front
and rear hydraulic disc brakes.
Ideal for riders who want to focus on fun rather than
frequently performing maintenance chores, the CRF230F
offers value and performance in a great-looking package.
It has a proven 223cc air-cooled engine, durable six-speed
transmission, plush suspension and electric start, and its
lightweight components, reliable platform and full-size
ergonomics make it great for adults and larger teens who
put a premium on their riding experience.
Offering fun, maintenance-free riding, the midsized
CRF150F is the logical choice for riders moving up from
its smaller siblings. Electric start simplifies the learning
process, while a smooth-shifting, five-speed transmission
makes for easy gear changes. The motorcycle’s compact
149cc four-stroke engine is small enough for beginners
but packs enough power to entertain experienced riders.
Above all, the CRF150F offers fun in an in-between size
that is hard to beat.
Honda’s commitment to riders of all ages is perhaps most
apparent in the CRF125F. The easy-to-ride package is
offered in both a standard size and a Big Wheel version
that has larger-diameter rims and a two-inch taller
seat height, ensuring that riders of varying sizes can
find a motorcycle with just the right feel. Both versions
come equipped with electric start, a smooth four-speed
transmission and a 125cc, air-cooled four-stroke engine.
While they’re smaller in size, both versions combine
reliability and fun in a big way.
Built with beginners in mind, the CRF110F offers a great
first-ride experience in a reliable package, with a proven,
automatic four-speed transmission and the option to use
either an electric-start button or a manual kick-starter.
Youngsters can focus on the fundamentals of riding, while
a built-in throttle limiter enables parents to customize the
amount of available power depending on the rider’s ability.
The CRF110F is a great choice as that “next” bike or even
for first-time riders.
When it comes to a young rider’s first motorcycle, few
would dispute that the CRF50F is the best choice around,
and for 2016 the littlest Honda returns with the same
durable, low-maintenance, controllable engine that built
its reputation. With an automatic clutch and an adjustable
throttle limiter, the CRF50F represents an unintimidating
gateway to the world of motorcycling.
NM4 AND PCX150 BACK FOR MORE FUN
To continue the excitement for 2016 model announcements,
Honda Canada welcomes back the NM4 and the PCX150 scooter.
Since its introduction, the innovative NM4 has
accumulated a fan base from all walks of life, including
people who previously paid no attention to motorcycling.
That’s understandable considering the model’s radical
sculpted styling with integrated storage, plus features like
a 25-colour LED display and integrated front and rear LED
lights. That radical design continues below the surface as
well, with its revolutionary 670cc fuel-injected parallel-twin
engine, plus rider-friendly attributes like a low seat height,
six-speed Dual Clutch transmission (DCT), anti-lock brakes
and a passenger seat that flips up to become a backrest
for the rider. For 2016, the NM4 returns again in limited
quantities and is sure to continue turning heads and
creating unique riding experiences.
Known for being practical and versatile, the PCX150 is
great for customers who are looking for a highway capable
commuter and a fun way to get around town. Powered
by a low-friction, liquid-cooled 153cc engine, the PCX150
has a sleek and nimble design, comfortable passenger
seat and 12-volt accessory adapter for charging personal
electronics. With excellent fuel efficiency and an 8 litre
tank, visits to gas stations are few and far between. For
2016, the PCX150 comes in Matte Silver Metallic.
Wednesday, 13 May 2015 16:19 Published in Industry News