The Nurburgring motor-racing circuit in the Eifel mountains above the Rhine is famous in motor-sport as a Grand-Prix track for Formula One cars.
GV Motor-cyclists arrive at Nurburgring
GV Motor-cyclists parked
CU Elephant symbol on cycle
CU National plates on cycles (5 shots)
GV Bykes & riders
SV Cyclists cleaning machines
SV Young cyclist leading others round ring
SV Two cyclists collide
PAN cyclists round circuit
GV & SV & CU Camping site cyclist cooking (4 shots)
GV SV & CU Cyclist round obstacle course (3 shots)
CU ZOOM TO SV Judge
SV Other young cyclists & crowd watching (6 shots)
GV Onlookers applaud
Initials CM/BOB/SGM/0306 CM/BOB/SGM/0343
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Background: The Nurburgring motor-racing circuit in the Eifel mountains above the Rhine is famous in motor-sport as a Grand-Prix track for Formula One cars.
Each year in early January however the motor-cycle takes over, and enthusiasts and their machines congregate for one of the biggest of two-wheeled rallies, oddly known as the "Elephant-Meet".
This year saw the biggest-ever attendance at the rally, from Germany and other countries. The police reported 15,000 cycles at the event, and more than 30,000 people came with them.
The first January rally of this kind was in 1956, when about 30 riders met near Stuttgart, mainly to demonstrate how brave they were to ride a motor-cycle in winter.
The machine these founders favoured was the ponderous and powerful Zundapp KS 601, which because of its green-enamel finish became known as the "green elephant".
The rally has been held at a number of locations since these early days, but although it moved to the now established location of Nurburgring in 1961 is still held on to the title of the "Elephant Meet".
The West German Association of motor-cyclists now organise basic amenities for the crowds, but there is still an enthusiasts' atmosphere at the two days of the meeting.
There is no set programme, but the enthusiasts generally assemble on a Saturday. A high-light of the evening is a torch-lit ride round the track. Next day younger riders take part in various trials, watched by their elders.
The whole proceeding is extremely good-humoured, and the police are said to have more trouble with those who come by car to watch, than they do with the motor-cyclists.