2012 ISDE: Germany

This year’s ISDE marked the second time I’ve been on assignment in Germany. The first was a World Motocross GP in Teutschenthal in 2009, and I enjoyed both trips. The food is excellent; the people are friendly and you can drive as fast as you dare on the autobahn. The German beer is just icing on the cake.

This year’s event was based at the famous Sachsenring Motor Racing Circuit in Saxony, and it made for a great setting for the paddocks, with all its amenities. From there, the riders ventured out each day on a 100-mile-plus course that looped through the local towns and into the neighboring farms and woodlands. Each day, six to eight special tests served to rank the riders according to speed, although the transfer trails did their part in weeding out the weaklings.

The memory that made the biggest impression on me was from the small town of Zschopau where the old MZ factory still stands, although now it houses a motorcycle museum and a bowling alley. This part of the country used to be East Germany and it doesn’t seem as modern as Berlin or Munich, or maybe it’s because the buildings just seemed older, though they are well kept and clean. The town seemed like something out of an old WWII movie, with the very narrow streets and sidewalk vendors. On days three and four, the course took the riders right through the main part of the town and they intermixed with the local traffic, making for a few traffic jams twice a day at rush hour.

Here are a few of my favorite photos from the trip. Please enjoy. – Shan Moore

The Sachsenring Motor Racing Circuit served as the paddocks for this year’s ISDE.
Caselli charges up a hill on the motocross track.
GNCC competitor Josh Strang helped lead the Aussies to a second in World Trophy competition.
Andrew DeLong was part of the U.S. Junior Trophy Team that finished third.
Charlie Mullins rails a deep rut in Day Two’s Enduro test.
Thad DuVall helped lead the Junior Trophy Team.
Frenchman Antoine Meo won the E1 division.
Swedish twins!
Charlie Mullins won two tests and was third in two others.
Kurt Caselli leaps down a monster hill on Day Four.
Jeff Fredette made his 32nd start in Six Days competition and came away with a Silver medal.
Mike Brown gets a good drive toward one of the gnarly hillclimbs.
Robert Taylor was top American.
Andrew DeLong exits a woods section and onto a grass track.
Jesse Groemm had a good week on the Junior Trophy team.
The old MZ factory in Zschopau.
Riders head through Zschopau during Day Four competition.
Kurt Caselli’s mechanic, Anthony DiBasilio, makes final preparations on Kurt’s bike before the start.
Team USA’s container, which was “home base” for the Americans.
Mike Brown gets ready while Russell Bobbitt and Charlie Mullins relax.
Kurt Caselli cools his heals before the start.
Destry Abbott starts Day One.
Kurt Caselli gets away to a good start in the second test of the day. He would later crash and injure his shoulder.
Thad DuVall in the “Trials” section on Day One.
Johnny Aubert helped lead the French team to the World Trophy win.