Earlier this month we sent Brand Manager Graham to Germany for his first taste of Glemseck 101 – one of the largest bike festivals in Europe.
What followed was a four day trip across Western Europe with 25 other riders, all headed for the Ace Cafe Reunion in London.
With time to gather his thoughts, Graham filled us in on the whole experience:
“My very long week started Friday 1st, as I pulled up at the annual Overland Magazine rally in Oxford to quickly get the stand in place before my cover for the weekend arrived. We were already cutting things fine, as my hotly anticipated tyre fitting demonstration over ran as questions came in from an eager audience, so it was a quick sprint home and then across to the docks at Portsmouth for an overnight sailing to Caen.
Unfortunately I arrived to find that the ferry was packed to the rafters, and all cabins were fully booked. The decision to put my name on a waiting list eventually paid off as one became available, and I soon found myself sharing with a fellow biker who also had a long way to travel the following day.
As the ferry arrived in the Port of Caen it was dark and misty, but I had no time to waste as I had agreed to meet Continetal’s Head of 2-Wheel Spyro at 3pm on the dot close to the city of Stuttgart. As the sun began to rise life just got better and better. Great motorcycle, traffic free roads and warm sunshine through my retro open face helmet which was very welcome – many trouble free miles only interrupted by the need for fuel and to pay the auto-route tolls.
Crossing the Rhine into Germany I was presented with three back-to-back thunderstorms which slowed the progress considerably. Although the ContiRoadAttack 3 tyres on the Rnine T Racer S behaved impeccably, poor visibility led to traffic congestion which lost me valuable time and soon my watch told me I was late.
Finally the Glemseck show came into view, and I was only about 1 hour behind schedule! After an 8 hour ride, now soaked to the skin I was greeted by a throng of festival-goers with the party in full swing, all trying to get a closer look at the newly painted BMW. Who is this crazy guy who has ridden from England I could hear them say.
The show was excellent with many examples of both old and modern custom bikes. Riders involved with the Continental Run back to The Ace were introduced on stage one after the other, immediate friendships formed as we found ourselves thrust in front of a huge crowd of onlookers.
After a busy Sunday at the Glemseck 101 show, Monday saw 26 Continental Run riders including myself assembled outside the once bustling Glemseck Hotel, which now looked completely different as most of the visitors had gone their separate ways.
It was here I met Conti competition winner Lutz from Hamburg for the first time, a great guy but clearly nervous about the several days of riding ahead. Those nerves quickly disappeared as we hit the road.
But before that could happen, ride organiser Hans Pieter from the Ace Café delivered an invaluable briefing, and then we were away…
The Black Forest, Des Voges Du Nord, Luxembourg, and Des Ardennes all provided some spectacular riding, and the weather conditions were generally good and allowed everyone to keep to a pretty brisk pace whilst enjoying the scenery.
As the four days of riding passed, friendships grew stronger and stronger, with many stories being exchanged in the evenings. Tyre performance and durability were often part of the conversation, and the ContiRoadAttack 3s were definitely getting themselves noticed, surefooted and confidence inspiring.
Eventually arriving in London on the Thursday, we had time for a short breather before the party started once again with The Ace Café annual Rockers Reunion starting early on Friday.
At this point the BMW took pride of place next to our customised Triumph Bonneville Flat Tracker, fitted with some aggressive looking TKC 80 tyres.
On Sunday the show moved to Brighton for the famous Burn Up. With myself and colleague Owen both up at the crack of dawn to get to down there and set up, guest rider and TT star Conor Cummins found himself riding the Continental BMW bike in the parade from London to Brighton. Conor was a fantastic, down to earth guy and a great connection to make, so we’re looking forward to some future relationship which could even involve some Conti race tyres.
The whole experience was massively rewarding – and the Burn Up a very different kind of event to the Reunion only the day before.
I went in the knowledge that I only really knew one person. However, I have returned with 25 life long friends who shared this epic European road trip.
Along the way I have met many others and shared a together we’ve shared our passion for motorcycles and life in general… and that’s got to be what it’s all about surely?”
You can find out more about the ContiRoadAttack 3 here.