The VR46 Master Camp is in full swing, and now riders are starting the next leg of their training under the Italian sun at Campo Scuola. On day three, the VR46 Master Camp class was treated with some on-track riding with the man who spearheaded all of this – nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi.Professional motorcycle riders often rely on cardio as a huge part of their training which makes perfect sense, it greatly improves stamina and allows them to endure the rigors of racing.
This year’s crew, coming in the form of Peerapong Loiboonpeng (Thailand);,Galang Hendra Pratama (Indonesia), Soichiro Manimimoto (Japan), Kasma Daniel Bin Kasmayudin (Malasia) and Imanuel Putra Pratna were probably well aware of that fact, but what they weren’t prepared for was the pace that VR46 Riders Academy’s Andrea Migno and Francesco Bagnaia were keeping while out on their morning runs.Cardio takes a lot out of you, mentally and physically. So naturally, the team sat down for a nice lunch in Tavullia before their day actually got started. Rossi, currently competing on the Movistar Yamaha in MotoGP, met the riders at his Motor Ranch to kick off the riding session, along with the entire VR46 Riders Academy, and got down to some real work. All of that training is just getting a rider in the door; the real work is when they hit the track.With two days of strength training down, as well as their education regarding motorcycling in general, the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp were finally able to put their skills out on display against the VR46 Academy Riders.There were some notable figures watching the action: Yamaha Motor Racing’s Managing Director Lin Jarvis; and four-time Italian Flat Track Champion, three-time English Flat Track Champion, two-times American and European Flat Track Champion and Yamaha VR46 Master Camp riders’ riding skills trainer, Marco Belli got a peek at this year’s crop of riders.Seeking proper training is key, no matter the sport, and having someone as decorated as Belli is a magnificent resource to tap into. After spending time with all the riders out on their YZ250F out on the Motor Ranch, he positively beamed with excitement over this latest batch of riders to come into the fold: “First of all, I want to thank Yamaha, its partners and the VR46 Riders Academy because it has been a good experience also for me. I can see a lot of improvement in the riders‘ skills already, compared to the first day, thanks to the exercises we gave them. They are doing better and better; mostly with throttle control and their body position.“The good thing is that they‘re still young; they‘re able to listen and able to do what we ask of them. We were a little worried at first because none of them had a lot of experience on flat track but, as I said, by giving them some constructive tips they were able to improve their riding capacity. I think this program is unique and perfect for young riders to understand how to work on themselves to obtain results.”Galang has something to be proud about today, the Indonesian rider scored the highest marks among his Master Camp field, with a ninth-place finish in the first race. He then followed it up with a first place finish when it was just the Master Camp riders out on the field. Perhaps we’ll see more of him in the future until next time, let’s see some quotes from all those involved.
Valentino Rossi shared his thoughts on the class: “We are only at the halfway point of the first Yamaha VR46 Master Camp and already I see the guys are very happy. They are having fun and are interested in whatever is being taught to them and this allows them to learn everything very quickly. They are doing different exercises to gain experience during this Master Camp.“They have been at the gym along with the VR46 Riders Academy riders, they attended a theoretical lesson about suspensions and today they have trained with me and the “Academy Boys” at the Ranch. They are really good with the flat track bikes and they go very fast! I did several laps with them and I like how they ride! They also had a race and I enjoyed watching them on track, fighting for the glory to be the champions of the first Master Camp race at the Motor Ranch.“The Yamaha VR46 Master Camp will continue for two more days. Tomorrow‘s schedule is again very busy and in the afternoon they‘ll challenge themselves with road bikes, so I am sure it‘s going to be another beautiful day!”Galang Hendra Pratama: “We had a running session with the guys from the academy and I was very happy about that, but the best was this afternoon. I feel that this afternoon was the best way to improve my career and I also won the race amongst the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp riders so… Wow! When I return to Indonesia I will try to obtain a motorbike to ride on flat track , because it was such a good training and I don‘t want to stop progressing like this.”Imanuel Putra Pratna “It‘s hard to find the right words to describe these experiences we had today. This morning we were jogging with ‘Pecco’ and Migno and in the afternoon we all arrived together at the Motor Ranch, so it‘s like a dream come true. I learned a lot and ultimately I felt that I improved a lot compared to yesterday. I think it will mean great progress to my career.”Kasma Daniel Bin Kasmayudin: “First of all I want to thank Yamaha for this opportunity, without their support I would have never been able to be here to learn. I feel that this is the best training I could have had and a large part of the credit goes to Marco Belli, ’the King of Sands‘. I‘ve never had this kind of experience before, on flat track, but thanks to Mr. Belli‘s teachings I now want to buy a dirt bike to improve my flat track skills so can come back some time to show him how my skills improved.”Peerapong Loiboonpeng: “First of all I want to thank Yamaha to give us the opportunity to do something like this. I would like to get the opportunity to come here again to further improve my skills and race. I also want to say a special thank you to Yamaha Motor Thailand who has been supporting me since the start of my career.”Soichiro Minamoto: “We all enjoyed today‘s program a lot because we were at the Motor Ranch for the entire afternoon, but the session was more difficult than I thought, so it was a bit hard for me. It‘s a bit of a pity; I wanted to get a better result. I think I can use what I learned today in my future career. I will never forget what was taught to us today and everything that Marco Belli has explained us. We got to ride with Valentino Rossi. On track I saw him ride and it was beautiful: it was very clean and smooth and for sure I also learned a lot from him today.”
This week we ride two genre-departing motorcycles from the established American manufacturers. Jess McKinley gives us his thoughts on the all new Harley-Davidson Pan America Special, and Ron Lieback gives his on Indian’s latest version of the FTR 1200 S.