2021 is an extremely momentous year for the Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP team. What’s the deal? The entire year marks Yamaha’s 60th Grand Prix road racing anniversary, so the company is celebrating all year long. It started back in February, with the official introduction of the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team.
On March 10, 2021, Yamaha took its next step in a year of celebrating with the introduction of this gorgeous red and white YZR-M1 livery. The team chose to unveil it at Qatar’s Losail International Circuit test date, along with matching race leathers and helmet worn by test rider Cal Crutchlow. More celebrations are planned throughout the year, and will be revealed in due time.
This red and white livery is a beautiful way to honor Yamaha’s long history, including the racers, engineers, and employees who have all played their parts in making the race program what it is today. Back in 1961, the first-ever Yamaha racing team flew to Europe with its 250cc inline twin RD48 and its 125cc single-cylinder RA41. Five racers took part, including Fumio Ito and Taneharu Nogushi. At the time, none of them could possibly have known that they were making history—but they were.
Gallery: Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP 60th Anniversary Livery 2021
"We would like to express our sincere gratitude to our fans, sponsors, and suppliers for their support and the constant passion, and to the many riders and predecessors who have strived so dedicatedly for amazing achievements together during our 60 years of participation in the Road Racing World Championship,” Yamaha motorsports development division GM, Hiroshi Ito, said in a statement.
"Since last year, Covid-19 infections have raged and affected the world greatly. The situation is still severe. Against this backdrop, we announced in February of this year that we will continue to participate in the World Championship for five further years, from 2022 to 2026,” he continued.
“The WGP 60th anniversary-colored YZR-M1 means more than just a milestone and a look back at the footsteps of our forerunners. It is a sign of our determination to have a passion second to none, believe in the power of motorsports, and deliver excitement to the world. Please look forward to our challenge for the title in 2021,” Ito concluded.