Yamaha Motor Italia has signed Australian Troy Corser to ride alongside Noriyuki Haga in the 2007 Superbike World Championship.
The spectacular line-up demonstrates Yamaha's commitment to a series they returned to in 2005. Haga has won races on the R1 in each season - ending the 2005 and 2006 campaigns third in the standings.
Corser is a two-time world champion with 33 race wins to his credit. He won the series with Ducati in 1996 and became the first rider to win the world superbike championship on a 1000cc four-cylinder machine last year. The Australian has competed in 250 world superbike races, more than any other active rider, and alongside Haga will provide Yamaha with an experienced and formidable squad as they look to win their first title in the class.
The first appearance of Troy Corser with the Yamaha Motor Italia squad is planned to take place in Mugello on 25th October.
"I am extremely happy to have the chance to work with Yamaha. The team has lots of experience and is very professional. Nori and I get along well and I think together we will be strong in development and bike set up. I'm looking forward to riding the bike and I will be aiming to score my third world title on the R1."
"I'm very happy to be staying with Yamaha Motor Italia. After two seasons together we have a very good working relationship and it was always my first choice to stay with Yamaha and continue our good work. My aim, as always, is to win the championship and I think Yamaha gives me the best chance to do it. I am looking forward to working with Troy as he has a lot of experience. We can learn a great deal from him, which will help make the bike even more competitive. We have had many great battles over the years and he is a rider for whom I have a massive amount of respect. I am sure that he will be a good team-mate - as well as one of my biggest rivals."
Massimo Meregalli (Team Coordinator - Yamaha Motor Italia);
"I believe this rider pairing is a dream come true for any team manager. With Noriyuki we feel that we are ready to reap the rewards of the past two years. We have learned his specific bike preparation preferences, his way of communication and his approach to races. We both share the same strong feelings and it is now time to cash in on our investments." "Troy is a proven championship winner and known as a highly qualified developer who is obviously very experienced. We expect him to be up front from the start. It's important for me to thank Andrew (Pitt) for all his efforts over the past two years. He did a great job, nevertheless we have chosen to go for the extra experience of Troy as a two times world champion. Particularly for his ability to set up a bike and tyre selection during the race weekend, we expect this to be a mutual benefit for both riders. We expect that Troy and Noriyuki will work together closely in the development of the 2007 bike. It's essential to be ready from race one to go for the title with both riders".
Laurens Klein Koerkamp (Racing Manager - Yamaha Motor Europe);
"To have Noriyuki and Troy as team-mates gives Yamaha a very strong base for our 2007 world title challenge. Both riders are big characters in the world of superbike, who combine experience, consistency and success with flamboyance and aggression. Noriyuki is a true Yamaha man and part of the family, having already ridden three different Yamaha models in world superbike. In the third year with R1 the only objective is to be champion. Troy brings a wealth of development and bike setting up experience, that we believe will be beneficial to the whole team. He is extremely motivated to win a third title with as many different manufacturers. All in all, I believe we will have two serious title candidates who will provide an interesting rider cocktail on track and off track."