Originally Posted by Czechie
- why Yamaha is not able to put together a team like KTM? Does it mean that Dakar is rather a low priority to them compared to Moto GP?
Originally Posted by JMo (& piglet)
I think that is exactly it... While the Dakar is huge to us, and in 'off road' circles, Yamaha sell tens of thousands of street/sports bikes the world over - it's a far larger market, and Moto GP is a whole season, with massive TV and media coverage in every corner of the world, not just one race?
Of course the budget for Dakar would be tiny compared to fielding a factory and satellite Moto GP team/s, but it is the concentration of engineers and resources, and not least the target of advertising and marketing that is going to dictate their current policy...
Off road bikes are not a huge priority for any of the Japanese brands (compared to street orientated machines)... and even with the huge growth in the 'Adventure' market in recent years, I think this Dakar more than any other has shown that the current generation of Dakar/rally bike is a lightweight precision racing machine, not ideally suited to a everyday 'Adventure' role?
I've been paying way too much attention to this stuff over the last couple of years since I'm a bit of a Yamaha freak... The real issue for Yamaha is that a few years ago (2009 I think) they pulled the plug on most of their factory teams due to budget issues. I think even the Moto GP team was on the chopping block. In the end what they've done is created a factory 'support' program for all the racers that are out there, but don't directly fund the teams. This works for Yamaha for exposure and being able to offload some development to teams. The teams themselves have more of a burden, but still get the parts they need and some direct development through Yamaha. Before then I think you could consider Yamaha France as the Factory Yamaha team/support. As I think Jenny mentioned, this is Yamaha's version of what BMW has done. Exposure and development without negative feedback. (not that it wasn't negative at the time.)
Originally Posted by tehdutchie
What I keep noticing is the different builts of the YZ (not WR) that were in the race as 'supposed' factory bikes. I guess Yamaha still hasnt got a full works entry or Olivier Pain is not part of it. Once Yamaha deceides on a platform they can develop it and move forward.
The way I look at it now is that Yamaha just throws a few test bikes and some money at the riders and the 'factory' effort ends there...
Is it up to the rider to choose the bike and built or up to the rider?
Or is David Casteu the one that isn't on a factory bike (JVO Kit vs Alu tanks on the Factory)?
The other issue for now is that Yamaha has changed their bike platforms so many times in the 450 class since the Dakar move to South America. Several riders this year were still on steel framed WR 450 kits from pre 2007. Others were on the Aluminum WR, the 2010 WR, some using the YZ and now the new 2012 WR which is a YZ frame. So it really does come down to rider preference and perhaps ability. Now that Yamaha has made a more performance oriented WR, who knows? Perhaps another sponsor will show up and do an effort like Redbull/KTM?
Who else has a global presence that would dive in the ring?
Yamaha is definitely more consumer oriented, but they like to make forays when they want to...