GBC Motorsports-backed racer Dustin Nelson came home with hardware this weekend after the first and second rounds of the SR1 Championship Series.
On night one Nelson earned the pole qualifying spot behind the wheel of his Yamaha Motor USA/Weller Racing SR1 car. He carried that momentum over to the race, where he took the checkers and the first place trophy. This is the first time he had driven this car, which was delivered to him at the race. Nelson chose to use the GBC Motorsports Dirt Tamers for the first night.
Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A., held its annual employee and Star Touring and Riding (S.T.A.R.) event at the company’s Cypress, Calif., headquarters last Friday. Throughout the special event Yamaha honored its 2014 motorsports racing champions as well as select past champions and celebrated 20 years of support for Feed the Children (FTC).
Yamaha inducted 11 current and previous champions to the Yamaha Racing Wall of Champions. This year’s champions recognized at the event included: Paul Whibley, OMA Off Road National Champion; Dustin Nelson, QuadX Pro 450cc Champion; Chad Wienen, AMA Pro ATV MX Champion; Garrett Gerloff, GEICO Motorcycle Superbike Shootout Pro Sportbike Champion; Jeremy Martin, AMA 250cc MX National Champion; Jake Gagne, AMA Pro Daytona SportBike Champion; and Josh Hayes, AMA Pro SuperBike Champion and GEICO Motorcycle Superbike Shootout Pro Superbike Champion.
Following a banner season in 2013, the Yamaha ATV Racing team is off to a strong start in 2014 topping podiums and leading three major series across the country.
Reigning back-to-back AMA ATV champion Chad Wienen won the season opener at Aonia Pass MX atop his YFZ450R, while teammate Thomas Brown, who placed second overall in the 2013, finished fifth.
“We had good starts in both moto’s last weekend, and that was key — the track didn’t allow for much passing,” says Wienen. “My new Wienen Motorsports YFZ450R was working great. We’re very happy to come out with the win and start the season off with the red plate.”
In conjunction with its annual Feed the Children food drop, Yamaha announced its 2014 ATV race team.
As part of the seven-hour celebration at Yamaha’s Southern California headquarters, employees enjoyed meeting past and present Yamaha racers including two-time AMA ATV National Champion Chad Wienen. Wienen was one of a number of 2013 Yamaha champions on hand including motorcycle racing champions Josh Herrin, Cameron Beaubier, Jessica Patterson and Tomas Puerta. Past Yamaha champions and racing legends Gary Jones and Kenny Roberts were honored for all of their success and contributions to the motorsports industry and specifically to Yamaha.
Following a successful 2012 race season that saw Yamaha capture both the AMA ATV MX and GNCC ATV manufacturer’s titles, Big Blue has announced its 2013 ATV race teams.
Yamaha has signed Chad Wienen and Thomas Brown to race the AMA ATV MX pro class, Dustin Nelson to compete in the Yamaha QuadX Series and World Off-Road Championship Series (WORCS), and Walker Fowler to represent Yamaha in the Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) XC-1 Pro Class.
“Yamaha is excited to announce its championship caliber ATV race teams with top riders competing in the country’s leading motocross and cross-country series,” says Donnie Luce, Yamaha ATV/Off-Road racing coordinator. “Earning the manufacturer’s cups last year from both the AMA and GNCC series is a great honor and further solidifies Yamaha’s commitment to ATV racing both on and off the track.”
Yamaha has revealed its 2012 ATV race team, with racers competing in the top motocross and cross-country series in the country. Also, Yamaha is also expanding its national trackside assistance program with support at all AMA ATV MX National Championship series events.
“No one can match Yamaha’s support of the sport combining a top racing program, event and track-side support programs and the most comprehensive line of sport ATVs,” says Steve Nessl, Yamaha’s ATV/SxS group marketing manager. “This is an exciting time for Yamaha racing as we look forward to the 2012 season with a stellar team and the most high-performance and consistent race quad in the YFZ450R.”
Yamaha’s Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) team will again be led by ATV racing legend Bill Ballance as team owner and manager of Ballance Racing. Taylor Kiser, who took third overall in the 2011 XC-1 Pro class, is back on blue again for 2012 and looking to build momentum. Walker Fowler, the 2011 AMA ATV Racer of the Year and XC-2 Pro Am champ, will move up to join Kiser in the XC-1 Pro class for 2012.
Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A., made its annual donation to the Feed the Children charity Friday, Nov. 18 at Yamaha’s corporate headquarters in Cypress, Calif. Company officials presented two checks totaling $25,000 along with a truck load of donated items to the organization. As part of the festivities, Yamaha also celebrated a successful 2011 racing season with several championship-winning Yamaha Race Team members in attendance.
“The annual Feed the Children and Race Team celebration is something everyone at Yamaha looks forward to each year,” says Bob Starr, Yamaha general manager of motorsports communications. “As we move into the holiday season, it’s a great time to reflect upon the hard work and donations collected over the year that have a direct impact on families in need. Thanks to all of the Yamaha employees and the Star Touring and Riding Association for their efforts.”
ATV racing champions Dustin Nelson and Walker Fowler were on hand to celebrate their successful ATV racing seasons. Both Nelson and Fowler boasted perfect campaigns: Fowler closes out the 2011 GNCC series with the XC2 championship, going undefeated and notching a record 13 straight wins. Nelson was also perfect and clinched his fifth QuadX Championship after winning all eight races in the series.
Yamaha Racing’s Dustin Nelson capped his record fifth QuadX Series Championship at Glen Helen Raceway in Southern California on Oct. 29, dominating the track and winning both of the final two Pro 450 Production motos.
Nelson pulled holeshots and never looked back in the two Pro motos, highlighting his historic season in which he won all eight QuadX Series stops throughout Southern California and Arizona including 11 of 12 total motos.
“To have a season like we did, the equipment had to be flawless – and everything worked great round after round,” says Nelson. “We had strong engines to get us out front with no failures during the year. In fact, we used the same chassis and the same engine, with normal rebuilds only, all year.”
“Dustin dominated the series on his YFZ450R and stayed on top of the podium at every stop,” says Steve Nessl, Yamaha’s marketing manager who was in attendance at the QuadX Series Finale. “He’s a true champion to keep pushing to take the top spot on the podium even after clinching the championship back at the last stop in Arizona. It was great to see him stay true to form and win both motos at Glen Helen to give himself, Yamaha and the YFZ450R a perfect season.”
Yamaha’s ATV Race Teams have been claiming podiums this season at the nation’s top racing series from East to West. With returning champions and strong challengers on blue, Yamaha riders have seen success in Grand National Cross Country (GNCC), QuadX and AMA ATV Motocross Championship racing and are poised to capture titles in motocross and cross country action.
“We have a great group of racers who are doing spectacular things on the tracks and trails aboard their YFZ450Rs and YFZ450Xs,” says Donnie Luce, Yamaha ATV/Off-Road racing coordinator. “While there are fewer factory programs this year, the competition is still extremely tough – our racers are showing their talents and stamina pushing harder and faster. Yamaha is deeply ingrained in ATV racing, and we’re excited to see how the rest of the 2011 season plays out.”
Here’s a look at Yamaha’s 2011 ATV team through mid-August:
Thomas Brown battled with some of the world’s top motocross racers in the AMA ATV Motocross Championship series finishing a personal best fourth place overall for the year. After a rough start, Brown rose in the ranks capturing three second place podium finishes.
“Thomas has risen through the AMA ATV ranks, and he’s proved he is a rider to be reckoned with in this series,” Luce said.