Fun on the beach on BMW Motorrad GS Trophy Oceania day 2

Fun on the beach on BMW Motorrad GS Trophy Oceania day 2

10.02.2020: BMW MOTORRAD INTERNATIONAL GS TROPHY OCEANIA 2020 Synopsis of Day 2. Location: Castlepoint, Wairarapa Coast Weather: Sun, 22ºC Course: 360km, Napier Beach to Castlepoint Terrain: Highway 180km, gravel 170km, sand 10km Tests: SP3: Photo Competition,

BMW MOTORRAD INTERNATIONAL GS TROPHY OCEANIA 2020



Synopsis of Day 2. Location: Castlepoint, Wairarapa Coast Weather: Sun, 22ºC Course: 360km, Napier Beach to Castlepoint Terrain: Highway 180km, gravel 170km, sand 10km Tests: SP3: Photo Competition, SP4: Gravel Push, SP5: Beach Sprint




Today’s stage of the 2020 BMW Motorrad International GS Trophy is best described as a long push south along coastal trails. The Pacific Ocean glistened an azure blue under an unrelenting sun, while the riders weaved between shore and hills on a mix of tarmac, gravel and even sand.



A brilliant sunrise over the Pacific greeted the riders as they struck their tents for the typically early start. They rode along the coast to Cape Kidnappers (so named as this is where in 1769 the cabin boy on Captain James Cook’s ship Endeavour was abducted by Maori warriors). Here the GS riders faced their first challenge of the day, ‘Gravel Push’. For this the three teammates needed to push or pull their F 850 GS, with the engine off, across a slalom course set in the deep gravel at the back of the beach. A good way to warm up for the ride ahead!



After this the course took the GS riders inland through the Hawke’s Bay wine growing region, passing the vineyards of the famous Elephant Hill, Black Bridge and Clear View wineries. Te Mata Peak, an impressive 400m limestone escarpment guarded the road south, while the riders enjoyed the dappled shade offered by avenues of poplar and willow.



The vineyards eventually gave way to sheep and cattle grazing stations – the primary industry in the Wairarapa. Where the riders found stands of native manuka trees they also found another of the Wairarapa’s agricultural activities: bee keeping, manuka honey being a highly valued produce. From here the trails – a constant mix of tarmac and gravel – led back to the coast and at Pourerere the riders found themselves riding on the beach itself, sometimes on the broad swathes of sand revealed by the low tide, sometimes on tracks that weaved between the dunes and toi toi (like a pampas grass).



Back on the road, the GS riders headed south to Herbertville where again they rode onto the beach – a common theme for the day – for the second challenge, ‘Beach Sprint’. In this just one member was tasked to ride against the clock on an out-and-back course across the sands, finishing in a prescribed ‘stop box’. This called for full commitment to attain high speeds, but good technique if the rider wasn’t to nose dive into the sand at the turnaround or finish.




The last leg of the journey was an arduous 200km twisting route through the heart of the Wairarapa, as ever switching between tarmac and gravel all the way.



The gravel can never be trusted – as one UK rider found just 5km from the finish when he found deep gravel and slid to the ground, but no damage done. The finish came at Castlepoint – another of Captain Cook’s ‘discoveries’, named on account of the 162m rock formation that protects over the beach. There’s also a reef, which sailors need to avoid, but today makes this a popular surf destination.



The day again proved a long one, with riders still arriving after 6pm, but as ever an excellent locally-sourced evening meal awaited, and a special surprise: a sheep show! This being the Wairarapa what else would you expect?



Finally, in the evening, the teams submitted their images for the first GS Trophy photo contest. Public voting for the photo competition will open at 00:00 (GMT+13 New Zealand time) on February 11 and remains open for 24 hours. Go to www.gstrophy.com for full details on how to vote.

 




Tim Diehl-Thiele, Ingo Wirth photos BMW

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/bmw-motorrad-gs-trophy-oceania-day-2-beach---203620.html

10.02.2020 / MaP

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