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Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. is excited to announce that two Yamaha factory teams will enter this year's 40th 'Coca-Cola' Suzuka 8 Hours Endurance Road Race. The Yamaha Factory #racing Team will return to challenge for their third consecutive Suzuka victory alongside full-time Endurance World Championship (EWC) challengers, the factory-supported YART Yamaha Official EWC Team. The legendary event is the final round of the EWC this season and is set to take place between July 27th and 30th at Suzuka Circuit in Mie Prefecture, Japan. The two teams will be aiming to make Yamaha history by taking a third consecutive victory and the brands seventh overall at the event.
Clocking 218 laps to win the race last year, the Yamaha Factory #racing Team will again feature Japanese #racing legend Katsuyuki Nakasuga, who in 2016 took his second consecutive Suzuka 8 Hours win as well as a record-breaking fifth-straight All Japan JSB1000 title. Lining up with Nakasuga will be Alex Lowes - Nakasuga's Suzuka teammate from last year - and Michael van der Mark, who will be making his first Suzuka 8 Hours appearance with Yamaha. Lowes and Van der Mark contest the World Superbike Championship on the YZF-R1 with the Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team, and both have grasped the victory trophy at the 8 Hours before, so they will undoubtedly be keen to do so again.
Forming the second factory effort at Suzuka will be the YART Yamaha Official EWC Team battling full-time for the 2017 title. After stunning performances to take 2nd place at both the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the 8 Hours of Oschersleben, the team is currently sitting 4th in the standings (as of Round 3). The teams roster of #racing veteran Broc Parkes, 2016 German IDM Superbike Champion Marvin Fritz and rising Japanese star Kohta Nozane (also competing in the All Japan JSB1000 Championship with Yamahas factory team) will be ready to take on the gruelling eight-hour race.
The riders will participate in the event aboard a factory-spec YZF-R1 developed specifically for the 8 Hours and shod with Bridgestone tyres with proven performance from results in previous 8 Hours events, the All Japan Road Race Championship and the EWC.
Joining the two factory Yamaha teams will be the GMT94 Yamaha Official EWC Team, currently 2nd in the standings by just seven points thanks to two fantastic wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and 8 Hours of Oschersleben.
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