Yamaha Riders Set For 2018 Enduro World Championship Opener In Finland2018-03-16 10:07
Outsiders Yamaha Official Enduro Team are all-set to begin another exciting season of FIM Enduro World Championship competition in Finland. Following a productive week of testing in real winter conditions, team riders Loïc Larrieu and Jamie McCanney are looking forward to a positive start to their 2018 campaigns this weekend in the frozen Lake Paijanne.
With the season opening GP expected to be an all-snow affair, the duo of Outsiders Yamaha Official Enduro Team riders will be looking to make the most out of the experience gained from their first participation at the Finnish EnduroGP a year ago. Featuring an estimated total of 18 hours of racing in extreme winter conditions throughout the weekend, the season opener will be a tough challenge for all racers.
Loïc Larrieu, the 2017 EnduroGP World Championship runner-up, enters the 2018 series as a favourite for championship honours in the updated Enduro 2 class. Remaining aboard WR450F machinery, the Frenchman will also be aiming for the sharp end of the overall EnduroGP class' results this weekend in Finland.
Making a strong statement in 2017 with five victories and an impressive second in the Enduro 2 World Championship, Jamie McCanney will lead Yamaha's charge in the updated 250cc Enduro 1 class for 2018. Aboard his WR250F machine, the Manxman is looking for a strong start to the series in the extreme conditions of the Finnish GP.
The eight-round-long 2018 FIM Enduro World Championship kicks off on March 17/18 with the GP of Finland taking place in Paijanne, Helsinki. Johansson Yamaha Official Junior Enduro Team rider Albin Elowson will join his Yamaha teammates at the start of the Enduro Junior World Championship on April 27/29 in Spain.
Untitled Loïc Larrieu – Outsiders Yamaha Official Enduro Team rider
"I'm looking forward to the new championship. Getting second last year my goal for 2018 is to go even higher. It's going to be a long season and we need to do our best to kick it off with a positive result here in Finland. We arrived in Finland almost a week ago and since then we've made some great progress. Conditions are really tough and changing each day. We've had some days with rain and freezing temperatures, but overall the feeling on the bike is a lot better now. My winter preparation has been good and I'm feeling strong going into the new series. I took some time off at the end of last year to recover from a small injury but since the beginning of January I've done a lot of training on and off the bike. I am confident for all the work the team and myself have put into this new series and I can't wait for the season to begin."
Untitled Jamie McCanney - Outsiders Yamaha Official Enduro Team rider
"This weekend is going to be a new experience and we're looking forward to it. Last year conditions were different. There wasn't so much snow and the icy surface underneath made it easier to get traction. We've been in Finland testing and training for almost a week and we've come across varying terrain conditions. The most important for me is to get a good set of results and collect as many points as possible for the series. I've had a good winter preparation racing a few beach races and that was good training. It's been a real pleasure racing those events, I've built a good base and now I feel I am ready physically and mentally for the upcoming season."
Untitled Marc Bourgeois - Outsiders Yamaha Official Enduro Team manager
"We're really excited to be entering this new season. We have a strong team and both Loïc and Jamie have enough experience to make things happen this year. Last year the Finnish GP was our first ever experience in such winter conditions. We've learned a lot and we are now ready to launch our attack this weekend. We know conditions will be hard, but we've worked a lot to be ready for it. Both our riders had a good pre-season. Jamie contested a few beach races in France on the 450F machine. He really enjoyed them and felt strong as soon as he jumped back on his WR250F. As for Loïc, he enters one more season on the WR450F. Happy that all is in the right place, he wants to keep progressing this season."
Calendar - 2018 FIM EnduroGP World Championship
Round 1 - 17/18 March: GP of Finland (Lake Paijanne)
Round 2 - 27/29 April: GP of Spain (Santiago de Compostela)
Round 3 - 4/6 May: GP of Portugal (Castelo Branco)
Round 4 - 1/3 June: GP of Estonia (Tallinn)
Round 5 - 29/30 June: GP of Trentino (Arco di Trento)
Round 6 - 31 August/2 September: GP of Italy (Edolo)
Round 7 - 22/23 September: GP of United Kingdom (Hawkstone Park)
Round 8 - 12/14 October: GP of Germany (Woltersdorf)
Source: Yamaha Motor Europe
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