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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Yamaha YZR-M1 in Special 60th Anniversary as Wildcard in the GP of Japan at Motegi

Round 15 of the 2015 MotoGP championship at the Twin Ring Motegi in Japan will see a rather peculiar presence on the grid as Yamaha will field a less common bike as a wildcard entry. Yamaha's test rider and road racing star Katsuyuki Nakasuga will be aboard the third factory-spec YZR-M1 but his bike will sport the 60th Anniversary livery.
We saw the bike introduced by Valentino Rossi at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed. He rode a bike that wore the racing number 46 and proudly displayed the retro yellow, white and black livery with the iconic "speed blocks" design.

According to Yamaha, Nakasuga's presence at Motegi has two main goals
Nakasuga's wildcard entry at Motegi has two main goals, Yamaha says. On one hand, he is the official test rider for the house of Iwata, and his race entry will assess the development progress with the M1 motorcycle. Despite the retro livery, the bike Nakasuga will ride is the base platform the machines of Rossi and Lorenzo are built on.

On the other hand, 2015 marks the 60th anniversary for Yamaha, and Iwata wants to "have the spectators feel the history behind Yamaha's 60 years in racing through this special livery, and to illustrate our corporate mission to create Kando and our “Revs you Heart” brand slogan. Kando is a Japanese word for the simultaneous feelings of deep satisfaction and intense excitement that we experience when we encounter something of exceptional value." 

A Japanese Superbike and World Endurance star
Katsuyuki Nakasuga is currently racing with Yamaha Factory Team in the JSB1000 class of the All Japan Road Race Championship and sits in the leading position, with good odds of becoming the first-ever rider to claw four consecutive titles in the Japanese premier class.

He was also part of the team that put Yamaha back on the first step of the world endurance podium at Suzuka earlier this year. His Suzuka 8 Hour teammates have been no others than the two MotoGP Yamaha satellite riders Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro.

"Of course, I have my development duties for this year's Grand Prix of Japan, but being able to enter with special livery commemorating Yamaha's 60th anniversary has me even more motivated than usual. I'll do my best to show Yamaha's strengths and how fast the M1 is together with Rossi and Lorenzo on the world stage, and I hope that I can make it a race to remember for Yamaha in its 60th year.

Also, with the full factory entry, the debut of the new R1, and the goal of becoming a four-time consecutive JSB1000 class champion, I started this season with more pressure than I've ever felt before. But in both my main arena of the All Japan Championship and the Suzuka 8 Hours, we've performed very well. I want to keep this momentum with me going into the Japan GP, so I can leave some satisfactory results, and then take them with me to boost my JSB1000 season. I hope everybody will come to cheer us on at the race
," Nakasuga adds.

Seeing a yellow M1 at Motegi making battle with the rest of the bikes may look like a blast from the past, but it will definitely be a wonderful sight.

Source: Autoevolution
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