Camel Trophy 1985 - Borneo

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Camel Trophy 1985 was the largest event run at that point with sixteen teams from eight different countries taking part, including three teams new to the event: Japan, Brazil, and the Canary Islands. This time, Camel Trophy took participants to the world's second largest island, Borneo and the vast expanses of unexplored territory in its hinterland. Would the Italian team triumph for the third time in a row?

The selected route started at Samirinda on the east coast of Indonesian Borneo (Kalimantan) and by way of a long anti-clockwise sweep ended in the oilfield city and port of Balikpapan.

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Rain once again proved to be a formidable obstacle to progress during the event, creating perilously slick trails and fast flowing swollen rivers. Progress was even slower across the mountains of East Kalimantan’s jungle regions, at times reducing the convoy’s speed to a mere two or three kilometres per day.

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What made Camel Trophy 1985 particularly memorable was the improvised helicopter airlift of the complete convoy of Land Rover Ninetys across miles of flooded rainforest. The vehicles had become marooned on a low rise within the flooded forest where, without this piece of ingenuity, they would undoubtedly have remained until the next dry season.

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The other significant innovation was the introduction of the "Team Spirit Award", presented to the team who, in the opinion and judgment of all the other teams participating, most epitomised the fellowship and camaraderie of the event.  The first "Team Spirit" prize was awarded to the likeable Brazilian team of Carlos Probst and Tito Rosenberg.

Overall victory on Camel Trophy 1985 went to the Germany 1 team of Heinz Kallin and Bernd Strohdach.

 (Content from McLean Chapman Associates)


Team Vehicles:    Land Rover Ninety
Support Vehicles:    Land Rover One Ten
Distance: 1,500 km by road
Number of Teams: 16

Participating Countries:

Belgium 1 Philippe Goblet & Hubert Callens
Belgium 2 Jean-Claud Decraene & Wilfried van der Kalen
Brazil 1 Osmar Eugenio Kretschek & Luis Aylton Casertani
Brazil 2 Carlos Probst & Tito Rosenberg Team Spirit Award
Canary Islands Fernando Rebull & Jose Antonio Reyes
Germany 1 Heinz Kallin & Bernd Strohdach Camel Trophy
Germany 2 Georg Michael Diehl & Jurgen Meinig
Holland 1 Arie Plugers & Will Walters
Holland 2 Jouke Eikelboom & Gerrit Oudenampsen
Italy 1 Flavio Dematteis & Stefano Gasi
Italy 2 Roberto Ive & Beppe Gualini
Japan 1 Kunio Takagi & Fukumu Uzuta
Japan 2 Hirotaka Shimamura & Gentaro Izumitani
Spain Javier Casasus Lattore & Jaime Masferrer Ordis
Switzerland 1 Bruno Camenzind & Urs Beer
Switzerland 2 Werner Ehrsam & Werner Paul Buhrer