Bonus+Bike+Placard (BBP)

Bonus+Bike+Placard.  Easy right?  Seemingly not.  We’re going to put some clarity on the topic.

The BMR is different.   Our criteria may not be the same as the Grand Tours that you are accustomed to.  Our expectations may not be the same as the LD rallies that you are accustomed to.  We are very unique in our scoring functionality and camera phones add yet another twist.  However, we feel that if you can meet BMR’s criteria, you will have very little difficulty meeting the requirements of other tours and rallies.

Camera phones can be a challenge, especially at night.  They also vary greatly.   Many of you are using old and/or cheap phones (and doing very well!).  The criteria we set is partly designed to minimize the disadvantage of these phones.

BMR2013 is an “Exploring” rally.  You’re going to take pictures of quaint places that many of us have not seen.   There are open-ended themes where YOU get to create the bonus.  This means you may be the only one to see that bonus.  This uniqueness is another ingredient in the criteria that we set.

Keep in mind, your pictures may be evaluated against other riders’ pictures of the same bonus code.   Functionality on this website make it easy for us to do that.  As a rider, you can use  the website’s functionality to see other riders’ pictures of a bonus code while you’re routing and planning.  And if you’re  the first one to claim a particular bonus code, other riders will be viewing your picture.


Mandatory criteria and expectations for your pictures:

Bonus: (The meat of it all)
Your picture  will contain a CLOSE-UP  of the bonus.   In *many* cases this refers to a building or sign.  Close-up does not mean a picture of the neighborhood, it means that the “meat” of the bonus constitutes a significant portion of your picture.

Enough of a motorcycle showing to see that it’s a bike.  We don’t need to see your whole bike.  But we want more than a small portion of your windshield.  Most of our bikes are unique in one form or another …and anything in your picture that helps distinguish *your* bike is a good thing.

You are required and expected to have a concise picture of your placard in you picture.  What does that mean?  It means that we want to see as much detail as possible on your placard.


Bottom line: Good faith efforts in taking your pictures will yield you two things:
1.) Mostly good pictures, on average your pictures will be great.
2.) Appreciation from the scoring team.

Poor efforts will earn you neither.

Suggestions:  If you take your picture within aprox 5feet of your bike and placard, you’re likely to get a good shot of each.  Ideally you’ll fill the remaining space with the “meat” of the bonus”.  Of course there are exceptions, but following this guideline will provide you with good pictures and demonstrate a good faith effort.

 Also keep in mind  that landscape orientation often provides better pictures.


Let’s look at some decent pictures taken during the T5 Practice Rally:

Bill rode to the meat of the bonus (Harley Davidson logo) and provided  a great shot of his bike and placard.  Nice job Bill!  


Want to make friends with the scoring team?  Take pictures like this.  Howard rode right up to the meat of this bonus, (zip code) and he got ample bike and a decent enough picture of his placard.  Hard to do much better.  Nice job Howard!  Note: being hard-wired to your bike helps you get close-up pictures  :-)


Here the “meat” is the U-Haul logo.   Timothy Allen did great!   Not just by making sure we saw the logo, but look at the care he took in framing his picture to also include a stellar shot of both his bike and his placard. Great Job Timothy!


You can’t always ride all the way to the bonus, and here Bill showed us why he couldn’t (picket fence in the way).  Bill still managed a decent shot of the building with abundant bike and adequate placard.   A lot can be learned from this picture.   Nice job Bill!


A different but solid approach:   Scott rode to the meat of the bonus (Les Schwab sign) and used a miniature placard in one hand while taking the picture with the other hand.   This can be a good way to capture many shots and is perfectly acceptable.  Shots like this are why many BMR veterans carry a miniature placard.  This approach works well for Scott, maybe it’s a good way for you too?

There he goes again……..                 Great Job Scott!


Here James Kirkland does a masterful job of showing that he rode as close as practical to the meat of the bonus.  Jim then added ample bike and placard to his great picture.  Great  shot Jimbo!, bet you can’t do that again.


You did do it again, and again and again…….  Awesome!

Jim has shown in all of these pictures that he has no problem riding TO the bonus, even if it’s kinda smelly (as no doubt that porta-potty was).  Never underestimate the respect and karma that consistent good-faith efforts may bring your way.  


Hmmm, is the meat of this bonus a zip code? or a garbage can?  Well, we know from the bonus code that accompanied this picture that it was the 152 zip code.   But this is a fun example:  What if the bonus pack also included a trash receptacle? (garbage can is what we call them in NV).  John F could have used this same picture for both bonuses, KEEP IN MIND he’d need to submit the picture twice, with each submission including the appropriate bonus code.  Great picture John!


Here a veteran BMR point-whore shows how it’s done.  Mitch rode as close as practical to the meat of the bonus.  Then a great job framing picture -with ample bike including unique tank bag and decent placard.  Great job Mitch.


Put your pillion to use!   Nice picture and great teamwork….. (and truth be known, Angela is putting Steve to use by making him get off the bike and take the picture!)


Nice proportions of  B+B+P!   The three are divided near evenly into equal thirds.  What’s missing in this picture?  Not a damn thing.  Nice work Bill!


Bonus here is the Ford logo.  John brought us some fun with this great picture -putting his bike in the grill of an emergency vehicle with it’s lights on.  No reason to not have fun with your pictures ..Good one John!  BTW:  You don’t need a fancy iPhone9 to get a picture like this.


Not perfect, but acceptable.  RenoGrace rode close to the meat of the bonus, + adequate bike + marginal placard.  IF you want to be in your bonus picture, and there is someone to take the picture for you, that is absolutely OK.


Do you think that Jim was really at this bonus??   I don’t think the BMR scoring team has any doubt.   Way to drive it home Jim!  Stellar picture.


Here is a great example of making the best.   Here the signage is not ideal, but Heidi did a good job capturing it as best as possible.  She also got enough of the building to allow the BMR scoring team to validate her picture against other riders’ pictures of the same bonus code.   Always keep that in mind.

Then she put the icing on the cake with abundant bike and placard.   A heads-up picture!   Nice job Heidi!


How easy is it to take a good picture?  Well this is the first rally picture ever by Kirk N.   Many seasoned riders don’t get their pics this good.   Keep it up Kirk, you’re certainly off to a great start.


This is RJ’s favorite T5 picture.   Erik reached this bonus at dusk, knowing it would be difficult to get intimately close and capture the signage because of darkness …he knew that the BMR scoring team validates pictures against the pictures of other riders..  So, he got a nice shot of the building -by using his bike’s lighting.  Then he topped it off  with a great effort of including enough bike and ample placard.  Brilliant Erik   Nice job.


==========Get Close To Your Bonus========

When we say we don’t want neighborhood shots, we’re serious.  Instead we want the “meat” of the bonus filling up a significant portion of your picture.

This is the the #1 most common issue when it comes to poor bonus submissions.

Below are  some pictures that had the potential to be great -*IF* the rider would have put forth a good faith effort.   Seemingly in all these pictures there is no reason the rider couldn’t have ridden ‘TO ‘ the bonus.




========== G R E A T    E F F O R T S ======

Not every picture is going to be easy, and night shots with cel phones are especially difficult.   Want to increase your chances of earning points?  Put solid effort into your pictures.   Let’s look at a few examples:


In the pictures above, John Frick put in a good effort.  First, he stuck with the criteria and rode TO the bonus.   He then positioned his placard and bike adequately in the picture.  He then took a flashlight to illuminate the “meat” of the bonus.  What could have been improved?  Perhaps landscape orientation of the images.   Landscape shots will give your picture a bigger footprint on the website.   Great effort John -you know how to earn respect of the scorers.

Point whore “Mitch” putting in the effort:

Mitch got the camera low enough to get the shot framed adequately with abundant bike and enough placard and bonus.   Also note the landscape orientation gives the picture a nice footprint.  Smart:  Mitch got off of the busy highway and into a safe area where he could compose the shot properly and safely. 

Night shots are tough, let’s look at a few of Mich’s pictures from last year.  Mitch uses a few different lighting schemes that work for *him*.  He has map lights, bike lighting and flashlights -which he uses as necessary.  You will want to develop ways that work for *you*.  Not all shots are easy, – effort is the key ingredient.

This last picture is a classic.   It is not textbook-perfect on BMR criteria, but it shows good-fun and effort.   Bike goes down, rider doesn’t straighten out the bike but does make an effort to straighten out the placard!!  Thanks Mitch!.

======== N O T   S O   G O O D==========

These pictures aren’t likely to get you points.   Hard to tell what the rider is attempting to claim as the bonus.


This was not a bonus submission,  but let’s pretend it was and have some fun with it  -as we see many similar.

Nothing is good about this picture.   What’s even worse, after riding to the bonus, the rider made considerable effort  to walk *away* from the BBP in order to get a bad picture.


More Pictures?   Sure, why not!

The gallery below contains pictures taken during the T5 rally.   Some are good, many are adequate, some are marginal.   As you view them don’t use them as good examples but instead say to yourself:  ” If that was me, what would I have done to submit a better picture? “

Click to bring up a slide show of T5 sample pictures. Critique each one and ask yourself what you would have done to make the picture better.

Share A Groovy Thought

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>