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GS Trophy 2020: DAY ONE!

Posted By Louise C Powers #212117, Monday, February 10, 2020

Day 1 of the 2020 GS Trophy kicked off early in the morning. The competitors headed out, two teams to a marshal, to start off the competition's hours of riding through the beautiful North Island of New Zealand. Approximately 195 kilometers of the first day's 350 km was gravel roads, roaming over hillsides and through small villages.

One particular section of gravel road took riders over a mountain pass, but about halfway through they encountered their first Special Stage of the day. Excitement and nervous energy were high as the riders lined up to find out what they would tackle. Team journalists parked to the side, but were told to join their teams to hear what the challenge would entail. Riders were to cross a small river, ride the rocky shore on the opposite side from where they started, then cross back and do a small hill climb on loose ground. As soon as the first rider finished their run, the next rider could begin. As soon as that rider was done, the third could begin. All riders had to be across the finish line in four minutes, with points deducted for dabs and drops, as well as asking for help should it be needed.

International Female Team II started with Lisa, followed by Klara, and Andrea rode the final leg. Team journalist Louise Powers was available to help, should any rider need it. Each woman rode spectacularly, and each woman dropped her bike in one spot. The team quickly worked together to right bikes and send their teammates on!

Sixty more kilometers saw the riders reach their lunch stop and their next Special Stage. This was the Sena Challenge. One rider would ride and one rider would guide, using their new Sena 50R communication device. The rider would ride a short cones course, going through three gates and on to the finish. They could not drop the bike, they could not miss a gate, and they could not knock over a cone.

This seems simple enough until you recognize the reason for the comm system - the rider on the bike was blindfolded! They had to make it through the whole course without being able to see. After watching two teams miss out on points because of dabs and downed cones, Andrea guided Lisa through without a drop, a dab, or a knocked-over cone! Time would tell how their approach to this challenge would have them placed, and the team, along with Team India, moved on to lunch.

Following lunch, the teams finished out the day’s ride, rolling into camp in time to pitch tents and run to dinner. With little time to clean up, each team presented itself to all the others. Given two minutes per team to do so, some teams sang, some danced, some taught the whole crowd traditional dances or phrases from home. IFT II created a game show, searching for the perfect riding machine for each of the three women. The Trophy participants and staff went crazy for the women’s antics, and at the end of the presentations, it was time for scoring!

Each team crowded in close as officials announced the day's points for the two Special Stages. IFT II received zero points for the first challenge since they did not finish within time. They finished with nine points in the second challenge, and those points ranked them 21st out of 22 teams for the night. There is a lot of Trophy Challenge left to go, and they are hoping to move that spot up and up over the course of the next week. We know each of the teams are winners as they spend eight days riding through beautiful New Zealand, but check back for each day’s scores and Special Stages and to cheer our MOA member on!

Follow the action in real time (New Zealand time!) on Instagram (@AGirlOnAMotorbike, @GSTrophyTeamUSA), Facebook (GS Trophy International Female Team II, 2020 GS Trophy Team USA), and on the web at the GS Trophy website and the Women of the MOA blog.

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