Qualifying events for next year’s International BMW GS Trophy in South East Asia are currently taking place all over the world. One of the first of these happened in May 2015 at the Orange Exhibition Centre, where the 4th edition of the GS Trophy France took place and a trio of French riders were chosen to represent their country at the international finals to be held in Thailand next February and March.
Organized in partnership with Touratech, the fourth GS Trophy France attracted 110 participants and around 5,000 visitors who came to sample the unique atmosphere and watch some of the best GS riders in the country take on the considerable challenges that this eliminator event offered up.
For all involved, the tasks took place over two days in and around Orange in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region in southeastern France and consisted of 22 events designed to test competitors to the limits and expose any weak points in their skill sets and technique. The diverse, varied and intensive programme included roadbook navigation, agility trials, team events, technical knowledge tests, sporting challenges – and of course plenty of off-road action and entertainment!
Among the many competitors were five female riders and 13 owners of ‘classic’ GS bikes, who showed all the enthusiastic spectators that a BMW GS bike – whatever its age or size – can offer male and female riders endless opportunities for fun, travel, camaraderie and competition.
From the 110 participants who started the event, the 10 best riders were selected for the finals, where they were then tested on another series of challenges that required the highest levels of machine control, balance and technique.
The three riders who came out on top at this final GS Trophy France 2015 event were Marc Antoine Peltriaux, Julien Batier and Sébastien Saphores. These three riders will proudly make up the Team France trio who will represent their country in the international finals in South East Asia in 2016. As part of their winner’s package they will also make a journey to the BMW Motorrad Enduro Park in Hechlingen, Germany as part of their ongoing preparations for next year’s competition.
Special mentions should also go to Stephanie Bouisson, who came in first place in the women's category (as well as being among the top ten finalists) and Pierre Alexandre Treust, who came first in the ‘GS Classic’ category and was also a finalist. Stephanie has also since been selected alongside ten women from across the globe who will be competing for a place in the first ever International GS Trophy Women’s Team. These ten females will be going head-to-head in South Africa from 13 to 15 September to determine the final three who will ‘take on the boys’ in Thailand next year.
Watch some of the best moments of the GS Trophy France 2015 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWlfv1e3Jws