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Though the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp riders were eager to revisit the VR46 Motor Ranch to race against Luca Marini and Marco Bezzecchi, they felt some sadness when leaving the hotel, knowing it was the last day of their Master Camp experience. However, the sad feelings were quickly gone when they arrived at the track and headed out to greet instructor Marco Belli.
After going back inside for a quick wardrobe change, they got the chance to rev up the engines of their YZ250F bikes in a warm-up session and three races: two around the entire track and one on the oval. After some close racing, the last Master Camp challenge was ultimately won by Anggi Setiawan (18, Indonesia), ahead of Tomas Casas (18, Canada) in second place, and Brandon Demmery (19, Australia).
The two and half hours of competing had made the riders hungry, so they headed to Tavullia and their usual restaurant, before making their way to the VR46 Headquarters.
After a quick guided tour through the building, past the latest products and the VR46 Riders Academy and Yamaha VR46 Master Camp bikes, the riders went upstairs to Valentino Rossi‘s office, for the traditional graduation ceremony. The riders viewed a summary video of the last five special days, before being handed their official Yamaha VR46 Master Camp certificate of attendance and some extra gifts from VR46.
The Yamaha VR46 Master Camp team want to sincerely thank Yamaha, its partners, Valentino Rossi, VR46, the VR46 Riders Academy and its riders for their contribution to this project, which gave the six Master Camp students the opportunity to take the next step in their racing endeavours. The Master Camp team also sincerely thank the six riders for their efforts.
You can get to know Muhammad Akid bin Aziz (18, Malaysia) and Shota Ite (15, Japan) better by watching their rider interview videos at www.yamahamotogp.com.
Valentino Rossi: "We have already come to the end of the third Yamaha VR46 Master Camp. This week was a chance for the Master Camp guys to learn many new things on and off the track. It was a very busy schedule, especially the first half of the week and time goes by very fast when you are in places such as the Motor Ranch, Misano and Misanino circuit and the gym. It was a pleasure to meet them at the ranch and listen to their questions. On day four, they watched me and the VR46 Academy riders on track, with Marco Belli giving them some advice. The guys are very interested in learning new ways to improve their riding and I‘ve heard the same thing from the Master Camp instructors. All the students made another step forward this last week and seemed to have fun, which is also an important factor for riding. It‘s always sad when the Master Camp finishes, but I think the guys have learned and experienced a lot and they can now try their new skills at home, and I‘m looking forward to the next Master Camp in July."
Peerapong Boonlert: "In the morning we went to the Motor Ranch and had our last opportunity to ride. I was a little disappointed that I didn‘t win any of the races, but I‘m still very happy and grateful for this experience. I want to thank the VR46 and Master Camp staff, as well as the instructors. I hope someday I will be riding here again."
Anggi Setiawan: "The last day was probably the best day for me, because I won at the ranch. On the first day I wasn‘t able to achieve these results so that shows how helpful the tips of the Master Camp instructors are. As it was our last day, I want to thank Yamaha and VR46 for the incredible opportunity, which was probably the best chance for me to show my skills. I hope this experience will allow me to make another step towards a professional career, to reach World Championship level in the future."
Muhammad Akid Bin Aziz: "Yesterday I felt a big improvement in comparison to the very first day, but I couldn't help but feel very sad that it was also the last day. Everything has finished now… I want to thank Yamaha and VR46 for their hard work and support. I hope I can continue training like this when I‘m back at home. It won‘t be exactly the same, but I hope I can do something similar in the continuation of my career."
Shota Ite: "Though I noticed I was still making some mistakes during the races yesterday morning, I‘m still very happy that I was able to have this experience and race against the other riders. I want to say a special thank you to Marco Belli and also the other instructors who helped me prepare the motorcycle and taught me how to ride faster. I was very impressed with how well organised VR46 is. I want to thank everyone in the Master Camp team for showing me these wonderful places, I want to thank them a lot. I got really emotional when I received the certificate and the pictures. A really big thank you to Yamaha and everyone who gave me this opportunity."
Brandon Demmery: "The week has been an amazing experience and I will take home some memories that will last forever. I want to thank everybody who is involved with the Master Camp: Yamaha, VR46 and all the Master Camp staff. This is one of the best things I‘ve ever done in my life and I am going to remember riding at the Motor Ranch with the VR46 Academy riders for the rest of my life, so thank you very much! This was the best experience of my life."
Tomas Casas: "It‘s sad it has come to an end, but it‘s been an absolutely amazing week. I am so grateful to have been here and so thankful to everyone behind the scenes who made this possible. It was great to end the programme at the Motor Ranch and I had a ton of fun with the VR46 Academy riders. I‘m very happy that, amongst the Master Camp riders, I was able to get two wins out of it and an overall second place. In the afternoon, we went back to the VR46 headquarters and, watching the summary video of what we have done all week, it‘s almost unbelievable. To see everyone that‘s been behind it, and all the effort behind the scenes to make it happen, is absolutely amazing and I can‘t thank everyone enough. It‘s been an amazing week and I look forward to applying everything that I learned towards my racing back at home."