Japanese manufacturer Yamaha have four World Champions with five titles amongst them in their 2023 rider line-up, making it notably their strongest presence since returning to the Championship.
Four teams and six riders will run Yamaha machinery in the 2023 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship, with teams unveiling their fresh livery for the new season. With four World Champions having five titles to their name, plus a World Cup and a national champion, Yamaha Motor Europe Road Racing Manager, Andrea Dosoli has called the 2023 line-up the “strongest since returning to the Championship”.
The Yamaha lineup in 2023 feature six riders, four of whom are rookies to the Championship. While four of the six riders may hold a rookie status, they will each enter the WorldSBK paddock with a point to prove.
The GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team has an all-new-line-up for 2023, securing two-time World Supersport Champion Dominique Aegerter, and 2021 Moto2™ World Champion and Australian Remy Gardner. While Aegerter has been a frequent face in the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship as he contested the 2021 and 2022 World Supersport season, for Gardner it will be a fresh environment as he makes the switch to WorldSBK after his maiden season in MotoGP™ in 2022.
Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK will remain unchanged for the 2023 season, continuing with 2021 World Champion and 2022 runner-up Toprak Razgatlioglu, and teammate Andrea Locatelli. Locatelli is among the list of Yamaha riders holding a World title, claiming the World Supersport Championship in 2020.
Yamaha Motoxracing WorldSBK Team will return for their second season in WorldSBK, securing the services of 2022 British Champion Bradley Ray. Among the list of Rookies in 2023, Ray will contest the European rounds only for the season.
There will be a new Yamaha team on the WorldSBK grid in 2023 as GMT94 Yamaha make the step up from WorldSSP. The French team have opted in for 2022 World Supersport runner-up Lorenzo Baldassarri as they contest their first season in WorldSBK together on the YZF R1 machinery. Baldassarri claimed four race wins in his 2022 WorldSSP campaign, as well as being a multiple race winner in Moto2™.
Discussing the season ahead, Yamaha Motor Europe Road Racing Manager, Andrea Dosoli said: “For the first time, we will have six riders contracted directly by Yamaha representing our brand in the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship, four of them World Champions and one national champion. It’s a strong rider lineup, the strongest we’ve fielded since returning to the championship in 2016, and our expectations are high going into the new season. In Toprak and Andrea, we have two experienced championship campaigners, while Remy brings with him a wealth of experience from MotoGP. Dominique, Lorenzo, and Bradley are all proof that our unique step-up program, where Yamaha riders who excel at both an international and national level, are given the opportunity to step up to WorldSBK.
“The investment in our riders has also been matched by the investment in development, with the R1 improving in key areas, which was illustrated by the performance of all our riders at the recent Jerez test. We are in a good position to fight once again for the World Championship title, but we know that we need to eliminate the mistakes that robbed us of important points last year and put together a perfect season. Thanks to our riders, and I wish them the best of luck for the coming campaign.”