Black Gold Beemers History part 2, The Alberta 2000 Endurance Rally Era, 1994-2005

Discussion in 'Black Gold Beemers History' started by Tim, Feb 14, 2016.

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  1. Tim

    Tim New Member BGB Member 2018

    The Alberta 2000 Endurance Rally Era, 1994-2005

    The Black Gold Beemers earns a reputation in the long distance riding community

    In the mid-1990s, the Black Gold Beemers motorcycle club became widely known and respected across the United States and Canada for its membership’s enthusiasm for long distance motorcycle riding. This was at the time the famed Iron Butt Association, an international organization that promotes and supports ultra-long distance motorcycle rides, was just getting started.

    A handful of BGB club members including Tracy Deslauriers, Jan Repsch, Herb Anderson, Paul Crump, Jerry Gruenwold, Brian Hanasyk, and Vince Kretzeul had developed a passion for endurance motorcycle rallies, either by participating in such events in the United States or simply by enjoying long rides individually or with friends.

    In June of 1994, the BGB hosted its first Alberta 2000 Endurance Rally. The rally ‘s objective was to follow a prescribed route (with ‘extra’ points awarded for optional excursions), covering the maximum distance and accumulate the most points within a 24 hour time limit.

    The first Alberta 2000 (and each one in subsequent years) was planned around the weekend closest to June 21st. (That’s the date which is within one or two days of Summer Solstice - when Edmonton receives the most number of daylight hours of the year. About 17 h 2 mins. Sunrise is 5:04 AM; sunset is 10:07 PM.)

    Paul Crump was known to have ridden many if not most of Alberta’s highways, and was asked to be the route planner for the first rally in 1994.

    Alberta 2000 becomes one of North America’s premier motorcycle endurance rallies

    The 1994 Alberta 2000 was an unqualified success. Word spread within the long distance motorcycle riding community, and the event quickly grew. Rally organizers were eventually forced to ‘cap’ the number of entries at a maximum of 75 riders. The rally’s ‘entry fee’ was $25 dollars – simply a BGB club membership.

    Numerous BGB club members participated in various Alberta 2000 events not only as competitors, but also serving as volunteers at numerous checkpoints scattered across Alberta and BC. As the rally’s reputation grew, it attracted motorcycle riders from far and wide. Rally participants came to Edmonton from faraway places such as Texas, Arizona, and Pennsylvania in the United States, and even from Europe.

    Over the years, the Alberta 2000 became one of the premier long distance riding rallies in North America. It attracted endurance riding legends such as the late Ron Majors and the late Ron Ayres, both of whom were renowned for their endurance motorcycle riding accomplishments. (Ayres in particular is famous for establishing in 1998 the Iron Butt Association “48 Plus 1” record run, riding through the lower 48 U.S. states plus Alaska, in 6 days, 0 hours, 5 minutes in 1998. Interestingly, Ayres’ remarkable feat was assisted by a crew of BGB members who acted as advance riders, ‘sweeping’ the route to pre-emptively occupy the attention of police patrols, clearing the way for Ron to make his record run. Luckily the advance party didn’t encounter any police, but for their assistance and willingness to take a ‘bullet’ for him, Ayres later said he was forever grateful to those riders and the club.)

    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 24, 2016
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