The GS Trophy is headed to Albania for 2022, says BMW.
The GS Trophy is BMW’s in-house competition that lets amateur riders showcase their talent. The competition itself combines various skills; it’s usually a combination of technical riding, mechanical repair, and survival skills demonstration. The riders must use BMW’s GS-series ADV machines during the competition. The Trophy runs every two years, in a different location that emphasizes offroad fun and gorgeous scenery. In 2020, the Trophy ran in New Zealand, managing to get the event run before COVID-19 shut everything down.
This time around, the Trophy is headed to Albania. Why Albania? Probably partly because it’s well off the beaten path, and as BMW’s press release says, it’s “one of the last still largely untouched off-road paradises in Europe … “Varied landscapes with high mountains, plateaus, deep forests, beaches along the Adriatic coast, fantastic river beds to cross and deep mountain lakes provide the ideal backdrop for what we believe to be one of the most exciting GS Trophies ever staged.” Ideal conditions, then!
To get to the international competition, riders must first win national-level GS Challenge events (the Chinese team gets a wild card entry, since they were barred from the New Zealand event, due to COVID-19 restrictions). Along with the Chinese team, there are entries from Brazil, France, Germany, India, Japan, Latin America, Mexico, the Netherlands, Russia, South Africa, Southeast Asia, South Korea, the UK, and the US. All those countries have confirmed Challenge events to send riders to the international Trophy. BMW expects 60 riders in total, on 22 teams (expect a journalist’s team and at least one female-only team).
Note that, once again, Canada is missing off the list of participating countries. Although Canada’s sent teams in the past, and even hosted the event, it seems the country’s BMW dealers are going to take a pass, just like they did in 2020.