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GS Challenge

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Post by wingman on 26th September 2008, 17:19

At the risk of sounding uninformed regarding what the GS Challenge is all about, purely from an outsider’s point of view I would like to comment as follows:
I am convinced that BMW SA’s intention with the GS Challenge was to increase its parts-, sales- and possibly even new bike sales by course plotting the inevitable bike breaker.
I do not see the rationale behind entering a stock standard off the show room floor - the Rolls Royce of bikes - without being purposefully built for those conditions.
The answer I would expect to hear is: “…but the bike is built for exactly that..” CRAP! Think again! The closest I have witnessed to this was (during my years of rallying) where a so-called enthusiast took an Avis-Rent-a-Car and entered into the Castrol rally: The car was a total wreck and never finished the first stage.
In conclusion: Either you must be very insane by putting your own life at risk and totaling a bloody expensive machine or your money is burning a hole in your pocket!
My humble opinion….

Number of posts : 102
Age : 66
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Post by Andre on 27th September 2008, 09:09

I am sure you are going to get some interesting responses as soon as the boys & girls are back from the GS Challenge Very Happy Looking forward to reading them bounce

Number of posts : 334
Age : 67
Location : Sandton
My bike : R1200RT, R1100S, Yamaha TW200 (also want the new S1000RR!!)
Registration date : 2008-07-26

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Post by Richard H on 27th September 2008, 15:39


Just from my own friendly point of view:

I have ridden many kilometres of tar road in this country of ours. I bought a GS because I yearned to be able to take those little dirt roads that lead to Gatkantvannerens, Kaansvatstroom, etc. I bought a bike that is designed to comfortably take me on any road in the country.

There is only one reason why I am writing this and that is because I am not at the GS Challenge. The only reason why I am not at the GS Challenge is purely financial. I did the figures and the extra gear I needed to go off road was just too much until I've finished paying for the new clutch I had burn out on me during my Extreme Gold trip in March - on tar.

There are people who buy a piece of art and then store it in a bank vault because they are too stingy to pay for the insurance on it. There are people who buy a Ferrari, Laborghini or Rolls Royce and then park it on blocks because it's too precious and too perfect to drive on the road where, for heavens sake, it might just get damaged or overheat or get dirty...

These people are stuck in the rut of protecting their assets, not enjoying their purchases. How many Sandton 4x4's actually go offroad? 1%? 0,5%?
Most will merely get a little dusty on the short stretch of smooth dirt road on the road to Mabalingwe Country Club golf course. On their return home, they will immediately be hosed done, washed and polished by a paid domestic assissant. At best, this will be delayed until Monday afternoon so that the owner can take it to work so jealous fellow workers can be prompted to ask: "Where did you go this weekend?"

I bought my bike to RIDE. I ride on tar, on dirt roads and, as my comfort level builds, off roads. During the course of these travels, something will get broken, fall off and get replace. That is the price I pay for my pleasure.

Why does BMW Motorrad arrange the GS Challenge? Last year many bikes got broken. This year BMW insurance rates climbed steeply on all GS models. So tough! Go find another insurer.

Why does any manufacturer do business? To improve on the aesthetic of the product? For the pleasure of knowing they make the best?

Manufacturers are in business to SELL product and to make a profit in doing so. So they arrange events that will stimulate interest in the product, keep existing customers content using the product and to stimulate new customers. In between all of this, some fun may be had too...! Some routes are fun, some are tough fun and some are REALLY tough fun.
You pays your money and you chooses your fun...!

I have a good friend who tried to relieve the stress of being the CEO of an international company by buying a Harley-Davidson. It was a really beautiful bike, well made and a prime example of the product. Every Sunday he would wheel it out of the garage, take the dust cover off and ride to the shop for a newspaper. When it cooled off, he would have it washed and put it back in the garage and cover it with a sheet. (Once he rode to Magaliesburg with me. ) Two years after he bought it, he sold it again. With 2500kms on the clock, he got more than he paid for it. So, it was a good investment on paper. But the Rands he sold it for were worth 32% less than the Rands he paid for the H-D.

I had more fun out of riding my R1200GS over 11 days during March this year than he had in two years owning his H-D.
My memories told around a bar or a dinner table will earn me a drink or two every time I tell them.

I live to ride. I ride to live. When I ride I feel TOTALLY ALIVE, at one with my soul, with God and the universe.

To me, a bike in the garage is a waste of money. Sell the damn thing and buy the wife a new washing machine to stop her complaining. Then go into your study and quietly read a book about other people riding motorcycles up and down the continents of the world.

Better still, go on-line and find a talk forum somewhere in the world and post some provocative statement about people wasting their money riding stock GS bikes at the GS Challenge.

Go on, I Challenge you...
Very Happy
Richard H
Richard H
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Number of posts : 625
Age : 65
Location : Jacaranda City
My bike : R1200GS, R100S
Registration date : 2008-06-09

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Post by wingman on 29th September 2008, 15:53

lol! Judging by the last comment of your lenghty response, it appears you have more time on hand to sit and answer forums while your bike is parked. One thing for sure we can both ride our bikes in the weeks to come without replacing any components and burning our credit cards.

The GS guys are back and the parts guys will be meeting budget, no doubt.

In addition to my original comment and endeavouring to add value to the GS Challenge, shouldn't there be a qualifying rule (as with the Comrades) to ensure that those entered are better equipped to meet the challenge?
Judging by the pictures posted, a foot-ups machine would've been more appropriate without teasing bank managers and insurance companies. Smile
By the way I believe there is an internal email to all BMW parts maganers: "It's silly season, stock up on all those fast moving parts and I don't mean oil filters."
My humble opinion.

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