Yamaha R1 Lap Race Noise Bum

The team was founded in 1999 following the retirement of Wayne Rainey, who had run a factory-supported team in the 500 cc class for the previous two years.The team was originally based in the Netherlands but was relocated in Italy in 2002. Max Biaggi and Carlos Checa raced for the team from 1999 to 2002. Biaggi achieved a total of 8 race wins in that period, first riding the Yamaha YZR500 and later the Yamaha YZR-M1 in 2002.

In 2003, Checa was joined by Marco Melandri. The team had an average season with no podium finishes. For 2004, Valentino Rossi joined Checa at the team. Rossi got 9 wins and won the championship. Colin Edwardsjoined the team for 2005, when Rossi once again won the championship, collecting 11 wins. Rossi and Edwards stayed with the team for 2006. Rossi earned 5 wins and finished 2nd in the championship. For the 2007 season, both riders remained with the team riding the new 800cc Yamaha YZR-M1. Rossi had 4 wins and finished the season 3rd overall.

Valentino Rossi leading Jorge Lorenzo at the 2010 French Grand Prix

For 2008, Yamaha had a unique line-up with Rossi being joined in the team by Jorge Lorenzo. Although the pair were fighting for the title from different pit boxes (as Rossi chose to use Bridgestone tyres and as Lorenzo continued with Michelin), Yamaha operated as one brand and not two separate manufacturers. The title was won dominantly by Rossi who won 9 of the 18 races and finished on the podium in every race except for two. Even though this was the learning year for Lorenzo, he was able to cruise to victory at Estoril and finished 4th in the championship. In 2009, Yamaha dominated MotoGP with Rossi winning the title and Lorenzo finishing second. The pair won 12 out of the 17 races, and Yamaha won the Constructors’ Championship.

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