The popular 28-year-old recognised world wide as the UK’s number 1 rider has taken the opportunity to stay in the Yamaha family replacing Spies and moving across from the Yamaha Tech 3 MotoGP satellite team. Toseland enjoyed a strong rookie season in MotoGP in 2008 and has been a regular protagonist in the mid pack battles over the two years. His focus and commitment combined with his previous experience and success should prove a winning combination with the Yamaha team.
Partnering Toseland, current Yamaha World Supersport rider Cal Crutchlow moves up to the 1000cc class next year. 24yr old Crutchlow has been enjoying an incredible rookie year in the World Supersport Championship and with two rounds remaining, championship leader Crutchlow can already claim nine pole position starts, five race wins and numerous lap records on unknown circuits in his debut appearance on the world stage. His move from the World Supersport team to World Superbike is a natural progression and reflects Yamaha’s nurturing of young riders, allowing them to grow within the Yamaha Racing family. Crutchlow has already proved talented on a Superbike, ending the 2008 British Superbike season third in the standings alongside two wildcard appearances in World Superbike in 2008 which saw him score an impressive 2nd place finish on the podium at Donington and a ninth place at Portimao for the season finale.
“I’m looking forward to return to World Superbikes,” said James Toseland. “I want to show I’m still the rider that can win world titles. Of course there is some disappointment at losing my opportunity in MotoGP as I believe the challenge was still achievable, but the R1 has proven to be beyond the strongest bikes in Superbike and I know many of the Yamaha World Superbike Team guys, so I’m going to pick up where I left off and give 100% to achieving good results with the team. Within Superbike there were a few options available to me, however the way Yamaha have treated me since I joined them has been outstanding. They gave me a great opportunity in MotoGP, but now I do wish Ben all the best in his campaign and my aim is to continue Yamaha’s success in World Superbike.”
“I’m happy to stay to be staying with Yamaha,” said Cal Crutchlow. “This will be my second year of my two year contract as agreed when I started in Supersport this year. Moving up to World Superbike will be a great challenge, I’m looking forward to it and am under no illusion as to how hard it is but I intend to do a good job. I’m also looking forward to riding with another Brit. Ben is obviously doing really well this year and I wish him luck for the last two WSB rounds and next year in MotoGP. It’s great to be working with Yamaha again in 2010.”
“We are very excited about our 2010 rider line up,” said Laurens Klein Koerkamp, Racing Manager, Yamaha Motor Europe. “The experience of James combined with the fresh talent of Cal should make it a very competitive and successful combination to challenge for the title again in 2010. I have no doubt that James will be as strong in World Superbike as before, or even stronger with the added experience he picked up in MotoGP and we’re all very happy he stays with Yamaha. For Cal it’s a natural progression for both us and him to move up to the Yamaha World Superbike Team. As a successful R6 Cup rider in the past and having proven his talent yet again in World Supersport this year we want to continue developing his career within Yamaha.”