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Apr 10, 2014 - 05:55 PM
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Yamaha Ready To Blitz European Motocross Campaign
Posted by: newsla on Apr 10, 2014 - 05:48 PM
Yamaha Ready To Blitz European Motocross Campaign

The fourth round of the FIM Motocross World Championship at Arco di Trento in Italy this weekend will also see the launch of an exciting European campaign for Yamaha. The Grand Prix of Trentino (swiftly followed by the Grand Prix of Bulgaria at Sevlievo the following weekend) will be home to Europe’s brightest and best talent, some armed with YZ dirt-bikes as the full development ‘pyramid’ of the sport kicks into life. EMX125 (all two-strokes) take to the track in Italy and then EMX250 (250cc four-strokes) – a level higher and the feeder series to the FIM world championship – comes into play just seven days later.


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The European stint of the MXGP calendar will ignite another dimension of Yamaha’s comprehensive off-road racing spread. After the 2014 Dakar, Grands Prix – the highest level of global motocross - have already taken place in Qatar, Thailand and Brazil while numerous domestic series within the EU have either finished or just begun. On a continental stage the blossoming EMX divisions are gaining prestige as valuable ‘shop windows’ for the best racing prospects and some important and essential testing ground for diverse motorcycle technology. Yamaha are prominent in Grand Prix with their 2014 YZ250F and YZ450F as works prototypes as well as competitive Yamaha Rinaldi Research and Development [YRRD] special kitted engines but the European contests showcase the performance of the YZ125 and YZ250F production models often equipped with the latest YRRD customer kit racing material.

The buzz and tingle of the 125cc two-strokes will bounce off the sides of the magnificent Dolomite mountain range at Arco this weekend. At one of the most scenic circuits on the GP trail the eight round EMX125 – with a bulging entry list of over 90 riders - will begin and then travel to Bulgaria, Holland, France, Germany, Czech Republic and Belgium in the coming weeks and months.

In EMX125 the YZ125 is a popular choice of machine and clearly one of the sharpest tools for the track. During 2013 two rounds of the championship were owned by Yamaha and French starlet Nicolas Dercourt was runner-up overall. As Dercourt makes the step into EMX250 with the ’14 YZ250F the ‘void’ has been filled by countryman and fifteen year old David Herbreteau in the category. The teenager is leading the 125 standings in his native France. Not only is he one of six YZ125 riders in the top nine of the national series but is one of three as a member of the MJC Yamaha team to be attacking EMX125 (all rounds of which will run as part of the GP support programme). Herbreteau will be backed by thirteen year old Maxime Renaud as well as Nathanael Bress.
David Herbreteau

A rider to keep a particular eye on will be the highly rated Cyril Genot. Already tipped to be one of Belgium’s new ‘specials’ the youngster grabbed attention by finishing on the podium at Lierop, Holland for the final round of the 2013 EMX125; his very first European outing on the YZ125. Tutored by GP great Marnicq Bervoets from the Kemea Yamaha team framework, the fifteen year old is another emerging athlete expected to produce the goods at Arco and across the next five months. Also in EMX125 is sixteen year old Swede Alvin Ostlund who is fielded by the Mafi Yamaha crew and who broke into the top four at the British Grand Prix last summer; earning a championship position of 9th at the end of 2013.

After Italy the MXGP circus will gather at Sevlievo on Easter weekend where EMX250 – the feeder series won in 2012 by Mel Pocock on a YZ250F - will start it’s own eight round trek across Europe. Representing Team Hagnéré Yamaha with the new YZ250F is Dercourt – freshly recovered from injury – and Arnaud Aubin (younger brother of ex-GP winner Nicolas). Over in the JK Yamaha awning and Portuguese MX2 Champion Sandro Peixe will be tackling the next run on his career ladder.

Overall Yamaha’s European contingent is focussed to continue the momentum already established so far in 2014. Several stage wins and two positions in the top four of the ‘14 Dakar rally (Pain and Despres) was a resounding start for the 450F motorcycle (modified for Rally competition) while podium results in MXGP for Jeremy Van Horebeek (YZ450FM) and Max Anstie (YZ250F) also set a bright tone of results, speed and promise.

A group test session for the EMX125 teams and YRRD-kitted racers took place on Tuesday in Italy close to the Yamaha Factory Racing team workshop and was overseen by Michele Rinaldi and former Grand Prix winner and ‘sandmaster’ Erik Eggens. “In addition to a very nice Yamaha family feeling it was great preparation for the first European race,” the Yamaha Motor Europe Off-Road consultant said. “The riders arrived with some national races already under their belts and a good base bike set-up, but there are always some settings and riding techniques than can be improved.”

“All the 125 riders present (Herbreteau, Genot, Östlund) use a platform of YRRD 125 customer kit parts and its good to have the opportunity to exchange experience and set up ideas,” he added. “Yamaha is the four-stroke pioneer in motocross and both latest YZ250F and 450F 2014 models underline that once again. But Yamaha also remains committed to two-strokes and the EMX125 class is a great opportunity to not only show that but also to express the strength of the YZ125 model.”

As European fans brace themselves for the first real sights, sounds and sensations of Grand Prix in 2014, Yamaha enter this decisive phase of the FIM campaign happy in the knowledge that their status as the only Japanese firm to offer resounding two-stroke products (YZ85, 125 and 250) alongside the acclaimed new for 2014 four-stroke models, means they continue to enjoy a privileged and appreciated position in the off-road motorcycling community.

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