Bridgestone is the world's largest tyre and rubber company and is highly invested in motorsports, including motorcycle racing. In 2017, the company announced it would supply racing tyres to Yamaha YART, an official EWC Team in the race to win the FIM Endurance World Championship series. Get to know the racers on this legendary team.
If former world champion Wayne Gardner mentors you, you’re bound to emerge lightning fast, and that's how it turned out for Broc Parkes. The Australian from Hunter Valley won an incredible 45 Australian national titles as a youngster. He carried on going for the gold and raced for Yamaha in the World Supersport from 2005 to 2008, finishing as runner up in the 2007 title fight. Five years later, he won the Australian National Superbike Championship for Yamaha, and in the same year made his debut with the YART Yamaha Official EWC Team. Hungry for more, he joined the team again in 2014, 2015 and 2016 as a critical rider. At the last Bol D’Or, he posted a blistering 1’59,124 lap, the fastest in this race.
Max Neukirchner raced in the World Superbike Championship from 2005 to 2013, with a two-year interruption to compete in the Moto2 World Championship. In 2008 the 31-year-old German captured two victories and ten podiums in the World Superbike Championship and finished fifth, making him the most successful German Superbike-rider.
In 2014 he started riding in the International German Superbike Championship (IDM) and finished the season as the runner-up, having won four times and completed 13 of 15 races on the podium. The German rider competed again in the hunt for the World Endurance trophy aboard the YZF-R1 for YART.
Having impressed the team after joining them for last year’s Suzuka 8 Hour, 21-year-old Japanese rider Kohta Nozane signed up for a full FIM World Endurance Championship campaign with YART in 2017. A protégé of the late great Norick Abe, Nozane first rode a motorcycle at the age of three and started racing minibikes at the age of six. Nozane made his Grand Prix debut as a 16-year-old, running as a wildcard in the 2012 Japanese Moto2 race. The following season he won the Japanese national GP2 class and made three further Moto2 appearances, scoring a best of 16th in Motegi.
For the past three seasons, he raced a YZF-R1 in the All Japan JSB1000 Championship, finishing eighth in 2014, stepping up a place to seventh in 2015 and concluding the season in the top five in 2016. The young Japanese rider proved an inspiration in the YART Team during the 2016 Suzuka 8 Hour race with teammates Takuya Fujita and Broc Parkes. The inspired team delivered on their potential, with Nozane playing his part to ensure the team finished fourth during the prestigious Japanese race. And did we mention his riding style is out of this world?
German IDM Superbike champion Marvin Fritz joins YART after a dominant debut season where he took three double wins on board his YZF-R1M. As the son of German racer Wolfgang Fritz, Marvin was born into the racing paddock. He lined up for his first race as a four-year-old on a 50cc motocross machine, switching to the tarmac in 2002 and becoming a national minibike champion the following year, at the age of 10. Marvin went on to compete in the IDM 125cc championship between 2006 and 2010. He also rode four times as a wild-card in the 125cc World Championship, scoring points for a 14th place finish at Assen in 2009.
Marvin’s switch to four strokes followed, and he competed six times in the European Superstock 600 championship between 2011 and 2012. A breakthrough season came in 2014 when he won the IDM Supersport class on a Yamaha YZF-R6. The following year saw him remain with Yamaha but switching to 1000cc bikes, in the IDM Superstock class, before winning the Superbike class at his first attempt in 2016.
For 2017, Fritz also competed with a Yamaha YZF-R1 in the European Superstock Championship alongside his commitments for YART.
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