Thailand is famous for its beaches, its glorious weather and, of course, the hospitality of its people. All of which makes it the perfect place for motorcycle-riding, something of a national sport in these parts. Among the masses zipping around on motorised two-wheelers are a large band of fans and enthusiasts with a taste for the more rarefied and technically sophisticated end of the market. For them, only a genuine BMW will do. These connoisseurs have founded their own club: BMW Motorrad Club Thailand – Club of the Year 2017.

In the summer of 2017, BMW Motorrad Thailand unveiled the new R/nine T Urban G/S as part of a major event. On the guest list alongside the great, the good and members of the press was BMW Motorrad Club Thailand – and no wonder. Its members are not only enthusiastic devotees of the brand, but also big fans of motor sport and skilled riders in the own right. So we’re talking about people who know their stuff here, and many have the podium finishes to prove it.

BMW Motorrad Club Thailand now has 520 passionate members on its books, but still manages to pull off the “big family” trick. Everyone knows each other and there is a real bond of friendship here. Indeed, Club members are always keen to help one another out. One thing they all have in common, needless to say, is the joy of riding a motorbike – more specifically, a BMW motorbike. Motorcycles are a very popular means of navigating around this holiday paradise, helped not least by the weather (Thailand doesn’t have a winter in our sense of the word). Yes it does rain now and again, sometimes with gusto, but the tropical warmth ensures the puddles don’t hang around for long.

Thailand, destination of dreams.

Thailand is a country of magnificent, richly varied scenery. There is simply an incredible amount to discover and explore, and you may even find wild elephants, tigers and leopards crossing your path. The Gulf of Thailand alone has a coastline stretching for 1,878 kilometres (1,167 miles). In Thailand you drive/ride on the left-hand side of the road, an endearing hangover from British colonial influence in the region. At least there’s no need to adjust to an unfamiliar positioning of controls, though, when you’re on a bike.

The members of BMW Motorrad Club Thailand often hit the road together in their spare time. Regular meetings in the country’s various regions provide informal opportunities to hook up and act as a fertile breeding ground for new friendships. Plus, the Club makes sure it contributes to social projects both financially and through active involvement. Donations are given to schools in need of renovation, for example, and are even used to help buy ducks! Indeed, children in Thailand learn how to look after and feed ducks, so that there are fresh eggs to gather in the morning.

Practice makes perfect – Club members in the motor sport scene.

BMW Motorrad Club Thailand also has a thing for sport. The 2017 GS Trophy SEA Qualifiers took place at Kirimay Resort in Nakhon Ratchasima Province, with a total of 100 Thai participants and 15 from neighbouring countries locking horns. In the end, nine Club members made it into the top 20. Wanwisa Phirom took victory in the women’s class and Jackie Thawongpeay headed the men’s standings. The two winners will now head abroad to compete against a bigger pool of international riders.

The BMWMCTH Meeting 2017 in Amphur BaanRai, Uthai Thani Province (around 200 km / 120 miles from Bangkok) was particularly successful. More than 350 Club members flocked to the event, which included a book donation for a nearby school. There was also a football game with the school pupils, which proved to be a highlight for all concerned.

The members of BMW Motorrad Club Thailand are proud of their brand, whose motorbikes unsurprisingly stand out as something rather special amid all the scoters and mopeds on the country’s roads. Sun, palm-lined beaches and motorbike-riding pleasure: what more could you ask?