February 28th, 2013 by Jason Giacchino
Yamaha Motor Corp. USA, has announced its 2013 ATV race team with championship-caliber riders in motocross and cross-country racing. The clear leader in sport ATVs, Yamaha also continues to support riders throughout the ranks with trackside programs and other benefits for riding blue.
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’s support of these riders and more – and their combined successes in 2012 – earned it two of the industry’s most coveted awards: the AMA ATV MX and GNCC ATV Manufacturer’s titles.
“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,” said 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.”
The reigning AMA Pro ATV champion Chad Wienen will again be racing a Yamaha YFZ450R for his Wienen Motorsports team this year. Wienen claimed his first-ever AMA championship last year aboard the YFZ-R with a 31-point advantage over his nearest rival capturing six wins and 10 straight podiums. Thomas Brown is also back for Yamaha and racing under the Wienen Motorsports banner after a strong fifth overall finish in the AMA series last year. A formidable pair, Wienen and Brown also took first and second place, respectively, at the 2012 Montreal Supermotocross event in Quebec in front of 40,000 fans.
Dustin Nelson of Nelson Racing, who holds a record five QuadX Series titles, returns for the 2013 season aboard his YFZ450R. Nelson will continue to focus his efforts on both the Yamaha QuadX Series and WORCS along with teammate Josh Row. The Nelson-Row combo comprises decades of experience across a variety of race series and events including a 2012 Baja 500 Open Pro 450 class team win alongside Travis Dillion and D.J. Noerr.
The 2011 AMA ATV Racer of the Year and XC-2 Pro Am champ Walker Fowler will lead the way for Yamaha in the GNCC series. He looks to continue his climb up the ranks in the 2013 season and maintain Yamaha’s winning history of championship cross-country racing.
“The 2012 season was the start of a refocused effort to further strengthen our team and trackside support programs, which proved very successful with championship runs and strong finishes from all of our riders,” Luce said. “Yamaha will continue to focus not only on these top riders, but also on the broader field of enthusiasts and up-and-comers through our dealers, trackside support programs and participation at major events throughout the year.”
Yamaha will continue its ATV trackside support program working with Layne Barnes and Pro Motorsports from Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, covering all AMA ATV national events. Barnes is a longtime ATV enthusiast, and he and his staff will offer support for Yamaha riders by stocking replacement parts and providing technical assistance on race days.
Yamaha will also continue to support the Yamaha QuadX Series with help from Roy Bloodworth and his Big Kid Racing team (http://www.bigkidracing.com/). Bloodworth and his crew will continue providing parts, service, technical assistance and race information to competitors throughout the season.
“Yamaha is excited about this ATV race team’s potential for another championship season, and we wish all Yamaha riders the best of luck this year,” Luce said.