Press Release –
Front row qualifying positions and a top-five finish proved to be the highlight for Yamaha Factory Racing at the final Pro-Open race of the AMSOIL® Snocross Championship season, held in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin this past weekend.
Both Steve Taylor and Iain Hayden successfully put their FX Nytros® through the paces in their qualifying heats to advance directly to the main event with fourth and fifth place finishes respectively.
In the final, Hayden and Taylor expertly harnessed the explosive four-stroke power of their FX Nytros® to peg a lightning fast start out of the gate. By the end of the first lap both were in position to challenge for the lead. With Hayden running strong in second place, and Taylor equally secure in third, it looked like the teammates were both on their way to a podium finish.
Unfortunately, a hapless Taylor found himself flying off the demanding Lake Geneva track after being T-boned by another rider on the 3rd lap. By the time he got back into the fray he was at the back of the pack and finished 13th on the day.
“This was a very disappointing finish to the end of the season, as I believe I was well on my way to giving the team a podium finish,” said Taylor. “Everything was in place for a top finish. I was feeling really pumped to end the series on a positive note, my injured foot was cooperating well, and my FX Nytro® ran like a charm.”
Hayden, meanwhile, held on to his position for the greater part of the race until the unrelenting pounding dished out by the extremely rough track took its toll on his still tender shoulder, an injury he has had to deal with almost the entire season.
By the time the checkered signaled the end of the 14-lap event, Hayden found himself giving up three positions in the grueling race. He still managed to hang on to a respectable fifth place finish, however.
“Considering everything, it was still a good finish for me. My FX Nytro® ran flawlessly. I know I was riding a winning machine, but physically I was unable to use the sled’s power towards the end of the race” said Hayden. “It would have been nice to capture another podium like at the Hayward race, but it just wasn’t in the cards for this weekend.”
Despite the tough-luck finish to the season, team manager Andre Laurin took it all in stride, focusing instead on the developmental progress made with the FX Nytro® over the course of the eight-round ISOC sanctioned championship tour.
“We knew that proving the 4-stroke potential running against the best snocross teams would be a challenge. But we also knew that only Yamaha has the 4-stroke technology to develop and produce the revolutionary FX Nytro®,” said Laurin. “We made improvements to the sled every time out, and at every race the racer’s skill and the team’s hard work paid dividends. While we certainly had our fair share of bad luck when it came to injuries and crashes induced by other riders, we also showed that the FX Nytro® has what it takes to be competitive out on the snocross race track. The Yamaha 4-stroke power is just amazing.”
Everyone at Yamaha Factory Racing would like to congratulate and thank the entire snocross team for their dedication and hard work. Special notice goes to our drivers Steve Taylor and Iain Hayden, and our technicians Adam Robinson, Steve Simms, Jeff Torgerson and Jim Burton for their amazing work behind the scenes.