Motorcycle Racing News Yamaha World Superbike Return - Successful 1st Test

Yamaha World Superbike Return – Successful 1st Test

Yamaha World Superbike Return

Yamaha World Superbike Return - Successful 1st Step
Yamaha’s Sylvain Guintoli and Alex Lowes

Following the 2011 World Superbike Championship, Yamaha departed from the series, attributing financial difficulties. Two years earlier in 2009, the rookie Ben Spies proved Yamaha its first and only WSBK title, the Texan piloting the YZF-R1 to 14 wins in 28 races.

But Yamaha returns to the World SBK grid in 2016 with two pilots that will surely be title contenders – the 2013 British Superbike Champion Alex Lowes, and the 2014 World Superbike Champion Sylvain Guintoli.

Yamaha’s official return to SBK began this week with a two-day test at the Jerez Circuit in Spain. During the test, Lowes, 25, and Guintoli, 33, got their first shakedown aboard the Pata Yamaha R1.

Yamaha's Alex Lowes on R1
Alex Lowes

Lowes completed 121 laps, and Guintolo 100 as they successfully completed some setup work on the new Yamaha R1. The next test for the Pata Yamaha Team will be at Aragon in two weeks time.

Alex Lowes says: ”My first go on the YZF-R1 and I absolutely loved it! We’ve got a lot of work to do but the potential of the bike is really good. There is a lot that I need to learn and change with my style, so I have a lot I need to improve myself, but I’m looking forward to the challenge.

“The bike has a lot of potential already as I’ve said so I’m looking forward to getting out in Aragon already – if there wasn’t so much work for the boys to do I’d want to go there tomorrow! I really enjoyed riding the YZF-R1, it’s been lots of fun and it’s nice to get the project started so successfully.”

Sylvain Guintoli says: “Well, a very positive first contact with the YZF-R1! We’ve managed to do quite a lot of work but most importantly the base of the bike – the chassis and power delivery – feels really good. It was a positive test overall and I’m looking forward to carrying on the progress in the next practice in Aragon and Jerez. I really enjoyed riding it – it reminds me a lot of the M1 from 2007, I can see and feel the same philosophy behind the bike – so yes, a very positive first impression and it’s nice to feel such a good atmosphere with Yamaha.”

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007, and is currently Online Editor at Ultimate Motorcycling.

Neale Bayly Returns Home after Thirty Years

It was the summer of ‘85 when the Moto Guzzi blew its engine. I borrowed money for a big Laverda then flipped a friend’s...

The Great Race Tee by Pro Circuit First Look: Upgrade Your Closet

There are a lot more motorcycle racers who are legendary than there are race team owners. However, Mitch Payton is definitely an exception to...

Run-in with the Police—a Harley-Davidson Road King Police, That Is

I don’t often have a run-in with the police. Well, I recently had one. No, not some enforcement of the “Safer at Home” COVID-19 type...

Pando Moto Unveils 2020 Collection – Fashionable Moto Gear for the Safety Conscious

Lithuanian motorcycle gear manufacturer Pando Moto has unveiled its voguish new 2020 collection. Included in this year’s lineup is a full range of motorcycle...

2021 BMW R 18 First Look (18 Fast Facts): The Big Boxer Arrives

The long-awaited mega cruiser from BMW is here. Inspired by the classic R 5 from the 1930s, the 2021 BMW R 18 looks ready...

Joe Rocket Accelerator Jeans: Extremely Long-Term Test

I have been wearing a pair of Joe Rocket Accelerator jeans for three years or so, and I keep waiting for them to wear...