THURSDAY 7TH JULY 2005
The Yamaha Factory Racing Team and its riders Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards will contest this weekend's US Grand Prix in Laguna Seca in a special yellow, white and black livery to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Yamaha Motor Company.
The yellow, white and black livery which will be worn by the riders and team throughout the coming weekend, was originally used by Yamaha's US racers in the 1970s, most notably triple-World Champion Kenny Roberts.
The colour change celebrates Yamaha's racing history and particular success in the USA with American riders Roberts, Eddie Lawson and Wayne Rainey having won nine premier-class World Championships between them.
"I am really happy to be racing in yellow, white and black here in the US, especially since yellow is my favourite colour!" said current world championship series-leader Rossi, who this weekend races at Laguna Seca for the first time in his career. "It's great to be recreating the livery of Yamaha US and Kenny Roberts, one of the most famous and recognisable racing liveries of all time.
"I am proud to be racing together with Yamaha at its 50th Anniversary, especially at this race, which everyone has been looking forward to for such a long time. Our special bikes will help to make the MotoGP 'show' even more of a spectacle for the American public!" he added.
Meanwhile, team-mate Edwards has the honour of being the first American Grand Prix rider in 25-years to carry the yellow, white and black livery.
"It's awesome!" exclaimed the Texan, facing his first race on American soil since he left the World Superbike Championship three years ago. "My home race is already such a big thing for me, but this makes it even more special and I'm really excited to be a part of something like this. I really like the livery and the bikes look great.
"It's a great honour to be an American riding for Yamaha when there's such a heritage with the brand and the American greats like Kenny, Wayne Rainey and Eddie Lawson. I really hope we can make this a great 50th Anniversary celebration with the right result on Sunday!"
"It's very exciting to be celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Yamaha here together in the US, and it's really nice that Yamaha has been able to bring back this yellow, white and black livery that is such an important part of its racing history," stated Yamaha Factory Racing team director Davide Brivio.
"The team is proud to be here in this historic moment, and to have been chosen to be the ones to celebrate here in Laguna in this special way. Of course we will focus on the race and hope that we will be able to celebrate properly with an unforgettable race result on Sunday!"
The special Yamaha USA livery from the 1960s with which Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards will race at the 2005 US GP.