The GS Trophy adventure continues into its second day, with the lead changing into the hands of the French. This leg of the GS Trophy also included challenges not at all motorcycle related.

[Official Release] Team France delivered on yesterday’s promise to take a clear lead in the BMW Motorrad GS Trophy 2012 today. With two special tests – the first being white water rafting (the first non-bike test of this year’s event) and the second a tricky (muddy) hill climb against the clock – France excelled in both to turn a two point deficit into a nine point advantage over closest rivals Team Latin America.

Thibault David, Team France: “We are leading – c’est magnifique! We can’t say we practiced a great deal before this event, but we are passionate about riding our GS motorbikes. So for us this is just an adventure, we are very happy to be riding through this incredible scenery in the company of the riders from other nations. Yesterday we got to ride with Canada, today with the Italian team – we are enjoying forming these new friendships. To be leading as well, that’s just fantastic!”

The white water rafting test was a natural inclusion in this year’s event given this region is world renowned for the quality and high grade of its white water rivers. The rafting also required international teamwork as it brought two teams together to paddle each raft. The GS Trophy riders certainly enjoyed the experience even if exiting their craft for an exciting solo race down the rapids! No one suffered more than a few knocks and bruises, but importantly the test helped to form more bonds between the teams.

Michael Trammer, GS Trophy organiser: “The friendships are growing day by day and the rafting was a good exercise for teamwork and team building. And so the second day of the BMW Motorrad GS Trophy 2012 was a big success in bringing the riders together and that’s what we want to continue, so by the end of the event we are all friends.”
Tomorrow’s stage is the first marathon day, with the riders travelling more than 450km, with two-thirds off-road. It’ll be an earlier 6am wake up call for the bivouacked GS Trophy riders as a consequence; with the long distance and two special tests it’ll need a focused effort to make tomorrow night’s camp before dark.

Other highlights: Team USA and UK enjoy a swim.
The white rafting turned very exciting for the matched teams of USA and UK. Hitting a rock in one rapids section their raft overturned and all six competitors found themselves riding the rapids in, not on, the water. Some clasped to rocks, some got swept completely through the rapids until they reached calmer waters. Exciting, to say the least.

Nick George, Team UK: “It was a bit of a surprise. We fell onto each other and then into the water, each getting dragged by the water literally to all corners, it was quite incredible, bouncing off rocks – we got a few cuts and bruises. But the guides were excellent, using the rafts of other teams to rescue us while others were saved by the canoeist outriders. There’s nothing like sharing an experience like that to get to know people – we know Ryan, Carlo and Chad a lot better now!”

GS Trophy 2012 Overall standings after two days:

1. France 56 pts
2. Latin America 47
=3. UK 46
=3. Italy 46
5. Alps 44
6. Canada 43
7. CEEU 40
=8. Argentina 38
=8. Germany 38
10. USA 26
11. South Africa 21
12. Russia 20
=13. Brazil 19
=13. Japan 19
15. Spain 12