GS Trophy 2016 Day Two: Southeast Asia overtakes Japan

gstrophy team southeastasia


A tough day for the team, but members stay positive after starting their climb up the leaderboard

MAE HONG SON, THAILAND — Team Southeast Asia endured what Singapore representative Tommy Lee described as a “horrendous day” as the week-long GS Trophy 2016 continued into its second day.

In spite of the harsh self-assessment, the team had started Day Two in joint last place with Team Alps but moved ahead of Team Japan.

Their performance in three challenges, or Special Stages, picked up 20 points for them, giving them 29 in total.

The challenges included a variety of tests, including a quiz about the BMW R 1200 GS, a time-attack across a river (but going under a bridge) and a “dead end” in challenge, in which competitors had to push a GS around 30m in one direction, and then reverse it out again as quickly as possible, and only with human power.

The race under the bridge proved to be particularly unlucky; Thai member Peerapat Woratham suffered a fall when grit from the course flicked up into his right eye by teammate Lee’s bike.

At day’s end, the team shared joint-15th position with the All-Female Team, Team Austria-Switzerland and Team South Korea.

But in other aspects of the GS Trophy, the team has made a positive impression. “They are good guys,” said Jens Anders from Team Germany. Both teams had spent the day riding together between challenges. “It was a lot of fun riding together with them.”

Germany had to provide an assist when Tommy Lee had a spill, and used tow ropes to recover his bike.

As for the rest of the competition, the members remain upbeat. “It’s still not over,” said Lee. “All the exercises have actually been very straightforward, it’s just that we’re performing under pressure and we’re messing a lot of things up.”

“We’re still trying our best,” said teammate Faizal Sukree from Malaysia. “Tomorrow, maybe if we make fewer mistakes we can continue to climb a few positions. We have to think positive.”

“Today was better than yesterday,” said Thailand’s Woratham. “Tomorrow will be better than today.”

GS Trophy 2016 Day One: A slow start for Team Southeast Asia
The Olympics of motorcycles

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Leow Ju-Len
Leow Ju-Len is a lot older than he behaves. He's been writing about cars for 23 years. Someday he might do it coherently. Ju-Len believes in world peace and V8s, but not necessarily in that order.