They say that records are made to be broken. Well someone (Todd Trumbore) decided that the record for the most BMW motorcycles on a ride should be broken. The record was in the possession of the Swiss, but had been eclipsed by a group from Missouri which was awaiting confirmation from the Guiness people. They assembled 241 bikes for their record, and rode a couple of miles to make it official. This does not sound like much, if you’ve seen a Harley parade on any nice weekend, but these were BMW riders. They of the lone wolf clan with tent and bed roll, they of the hyper mileage solo from Prudhoe Bay to Key West clan, they of the honey you fly and I’ll ride and meet you there clan, they of the long way up/down/round clan, they of the ride my tires till the cords show, they of the getting there is all the fun clan. Getting this many members of the clan to assemble in a single place and take the same route requires mystical powers, a cosmic gateway, and a sacred amulet. Or free food.

Actually, the free food came along with a worthy cause in the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which, along with the record attempt, together formed a powerful force uniting the clan. The newly franchised BMW dealership at

Montgomery Cycle Center was a gracious and generous host

for the event, opening on sunday and offering discounts for all.  So the stage was set. A venue, a noon start for the ride, police escorts, and even the weather gods arranged a warm and sunny day while holding off the threat of rain until later in the evening. All we needed was 242 machines with a blue and white propeller on them.

Some of us got there early and got to live through a lot more of the “will we make it” roller coaster. True to form, there were relatively few large groups of bikes arriving. Most like me arrived solo, stopping and immediately shedding pounds of gear. BMW riders are fond of their gear and many subscribe to the ATGATT (all the gear, all the time) concept. I bet we broke a record for the most non-leather riding gear in one place, and I bet the glow of

safety yellow gear

could be seen from outer space. But I digest…

While we were waiting, a bike show broke out. Not since the national rally had I seen this many BMW bikes and variants. Old and new, crusty and pristine, fast and slow, farkled and not, they were all there. I could not help but take a camera-stroll through the parking lot. I’m not sure which model was most prevalent, but

my GS

added to the armada of them that was present. It looked positively spartan next to some of the more farkled examples sprinkled throughout.

Looking for what I was interested in, there were also many R75/5s around. Both in toaster tank form and not, but all of them in excellent shape. The /2 contingent (or the Earles of Fork as I am fond of saying) were out in force as well, with and without sidecar. Todd drove his spectacular dover white rig, but there were many other nice R50/R60/R69 examples to be found.

My R50

might have been counted among them were it not for new carb floats which did not arrive in time. A few beautiful R90S examples showed up along with a few drivers more like mine.

There was also a 2004 R1100RS in two tone blue which continues to be a bike Iwant, but only in that color scheme. Of course, there were many many other great bikes around including an HP2 and an HP3, some S1000RRs, and probably every variation of R and K bike out there. The


was of course instrumental in swelling the ranks at this event by promoting it (eg:

Jack Riepe’s Blog

), and by just showing up in force…

After a cliff hanger trickling of machines as we approached noon, applause rang out as each bike drove in getting us close to 240. We finally registered number 242 with perhaps 15 minutes before the noon start to thunderous applause. WE DID IT !! A few more of the clan trickled in for insurance. I’m sure that the official count will be in by the time this hits the air. After a group photo, we saddled up and hit the road for an 8+ mile ride to make it official.

The ride then continued for another 30 miles or so.

I suspect that having achieved the objective, the clan began to revert to its natural ways. I saw several riders peel off as we progressed, choosing to head for parts unknown or to ride at a different pace. I peeled off as the tour passed a half mile from the house. More of my favorite roads have been discovered, and I will now need to re-mark the territory.

I stopped to video the tail end of the procession as I turned off, so you can see it here

. It will be many moons before the clan of the propeller gathers again in like numbers to bathe itself in such honor and glory.

10 Replies to “Record Wreckers”

  1. Wow, great blog and nice post. Makes me wish I was in your geographic neighborhood !!

    Jugfins (NC)

  2. Whose tire is that in the first pic? He/she is insane!! And I thought that the Brit bike guys were frugal !!

    ps: I see a Velocette in the background in the one pic. You guys aren’t all bad 😉

    Brit Tish

  3. Dear Wayne:

    That was an interesting perspective on a great day. I was thrilled to see you there, and everyone else who rode in on a BMW. You need to change one line, however. All of the money collected that day — and donations are still coming in — is going to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which is world renown for its work in pediatric cancer.

    Bob Jones, the CEO of Montgomeryville Cycle, has had a long-time relationship with this hospital and we were happy to add to it.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack — Reep — Toad
    Twisted Roads

  4. Dear Jack, It was indeed a great day, and thanks for the correction. I have made the change. Thanks for your efforts to help run the events of the day.

  5. Wayne,
    Wow, what can I say! Thanks for being part of our special day ! You have a special gift with your writings ! I enjoyed every word in your blog describing the events of our ride last Sunday. If you are not a professional writer, you should be.

    Your accounting of the days activities was thoroughly entertaining.

    Please join us anytime, see you on the next ride.

    Todd Trumbore

  6. Dear Ted,

    Thanks, a day spent around BMW bikes with like-minded people which does some good and breaks a record is hard to beat.


  7. Dear Jugfins,

    NC has some beautiful country and nice roads, but the Mac-Pac and the BMW crowd around here is top shelf. Stop by any time.


  8. Dear Tish,

    I do not know whose bike that is, but would like to find out! It is now one of my favortie pictures. This guy is serious. Yes, that was a nice Velocette, and it had a rag beneath it to absorb the oil 😉


  9. Dear Todd,

    Thanks for the kind words. I do this for fun, so I’m just happy if a few people are entertained. The community owes you a great debt for pulling this off. I cannot imagine how much work went into that day, even with help from others. I’m glad that it was successful on many fronts. Thank YOU for your initiative, and for making it happen.


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