Yamaha's past and present project leaders ride the machines they created, and describe 17 years of evolution of this glorious machine
Current and previous Yamaha YZF-R1 project leaders got together back in February this year, at the Eastern Creek circuit in Australia, to celebrate 17 years of development on the YZF-R1. Former project leaders Kunihiko Miwa (1998), Yoshikazu Koike (2002 - 2004), Mokoto Shimamoto (2007), Toyoshi Nishida (2009) and the latest YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M models' Project Leader Hideki Fujiwara (2015) donned their racing suits and took a ride aboard the models they developed. Fujiwara-san developed the all-new YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M with the help of nine-time MotoGP world champ Valentino Rossi, and the new R1 is now already being acknowledged as the best litre-class superbike in the world.
Watch the video here, which shows the R1 project leaders' emotional reunion with the models they created. These gentlemen ride 'their' R1 and provide insights into how they managed to merge Yamaha’s racing DNA with the YZF-R1 design over the years to keep producing an outstanding sportsbike each time.