Yesterday the ninth edition students ended their Yamaha VR46 Master Camp experience with a final Flat Track session at the VR46 Motor Ranch, a visit to the VR46 Store and the Official Fan Club Valentino Rossi Tavullia, and the traditional graduation ceremony at the VR46 headquarters in Tavullia.
Tavullia (Italy), 23rd August 2021
The Yamaha VR46 Master Camp riders did their various 2021 Master Camp coaches from the last five days proud, graduating from the ninth edition of the programme with lofty report cards from all of them.

Unai Orradre (aged 17, from Spain), Bahattin Sofuoglu (aged 18, from Turkey), Humberto “Turquinho” Maier (aged 15, from Brazil), Fenton Harrison Seabright (aged 19, from the UK), and Iker Garcia Abella (aged 17, from Spain) started the fifth and last day of the programme with mixed feelings. But their excitement soon took over when they headed back to the VR46 Motor Ranch where they could show Flat Track instructor Marco Belli just how much they had improved.

VR46 Rider Academy's Stefano Manzi was present as co-coach. Belli started the training by reviewing video footage of the first two Flat Track sessions of the 9th Yamaha VR46 Master Camp. With clear instructions of what to pay attention to, the riders went all out during the practice sessions before it was time for some racing. Ultimately Garcia won, with Sofuoglu and Orradre in second and third place respectively.

At lunch in Tavullia, the riders finished their plates in no time so they could go shopping at the VR46 Store. This was the cue for the Official Fan Club Valentino Rossi Tavullia Vice President Flavio Fratesi to make a special visit. He asked the riders to head over to the fan club's headquarters just around the corner. There they got the chance to sign up as members, received a VR46 Fan Club membership card, and were showered with gifts, including a t-shirt and a cardboard version of the iconic Tavullia road sign.

With bags full of merchandise and gifts, the riders made their way to the final event on the Master Camp programme: the VR46 headquarters tour.

During the tour, the students were surprised at the size of the VR46 building, that houses both the company's commercial outlet, including a huge storage room, as well as the race department, that oversees all VR46 Academy riders. The tour ended in Valentino Rossi’s office for the traditional graduation ceremony, the place where VR46 and Yamaha first discussed the Master Camp programme in 2013.

The festivities were led by VR46 Riders Academy Director Alessio ‘Uccio’ Salucci. The riders watched a summary video of the last five special days before being handed their official Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Certificate of Attendance. Of course, the Master Camp wouldn’t part from the riders without presenting them with some extra gifts from VR46.

“First of all, I want to congratulate this group of young racing talents for completing the Master Camp programme in a great way”, said Salucci. “Entering the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp is always very exciting for young riders, but I think this group soon found out that there is no need to be nervous or shy. We are all here to help them learn, so the more they ask and provide feedback the better.

“The Yamaha VR46 Master Camp training programme has come a long way since we started in 2016, and this ninth edition was again an unforgettable experience – maybe even more so because we are still very much dealing with the global pandemic. The 9th Master Camp was a nice glimmer of hope that better times are coming, when we can start helping more and more Yamaha talents again, also from other continents like Asia.

“We hope first of all that the riders had fun this week. Fun is a key element of learning in this programme. The five riders have completed a lot of activities, and that must have been tiring during this hot week, but we are certain that it will help their future racing career. We have seen previous Master Camp riders learn a lot from the programme and get great results. The level of this group was seriously high – all the coaches said so, and they are a fun group. All the staff and VR46 riders will be cheering on the ninth-edition students as they return to their respective championships. We hope they will make their racing dreams come true.”

Seabright had suffered an unlucky crash at the VR46 Motor Ranch as a result of a race incident. He was taken to the local hospital by ambulance for a clavicle fracture. He will be seeking treatment in the UK after the end of the Master Camp but was able to rejoin the group at the VR46 headquarters for a private tour and received his official Master Camp diploma. The five new Master Camp graduates bring up the total to 42, hailing from 15 countries in all: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Finland, France, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Spain, Thailand, Ukraine, and the United States, with now also Turkey added.

The Yamaha VR46 Master Camp team want to sincerely thank Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd., Valentino Rossi, VR46, the VR46 Academy riders, the instructors, the supporting staff, and the programme’s partners MSI GamingOakley, Alpinestars, Pirelli, Yamaha Italy’s Marine Division, Joe Amarena Sunset Beach, and Capitaneria di Porto di Pesaro for their contribution to this project. Moreover, the team wishes the latest five Master Camp graduates all the best in their racing endeavours.

Master Camp supporters can watch all the Flat Track action of Day 5 HERE.
William Favero

William Favero

Marketing & Communications Manager, Yamaha Motor Racing

It was a great relief for us to start the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp again after a year of waiting, though the pandemic is still a reality. This programme is a source of energy and motivation for many.

Yamaha and VR46 started the Master Camp because we wanted to share our passion for motorsport with a younger generation of riders. We wanted upcoming Yamaha talent from all over the globe to have the opportunity to learn from experts.

For Yamaha and VR46 to be able to get back to supporting young Yamaha talent is a very important and hopeful sign in many ways. And seeing the improvements the five riders have made fills us with pride again. We know that the Master Camp is a lot to take in and take on. The riders are asked to learn about five different disciplines in the space of five days and do workouts on top of that. There is a lot of information thrown at them all at once, but these riders are clearly up to a professional standard. They have been great to work with all week, and we thank them and congratulate them on all their achievements.

I want to take this opportunity to give special thanks to our amazing sponsors – MSI Gaming, Oakley, Alpinestars, Pirelli, Yamaha Italy‘s Marine Division, the Capitaneria di Porto di Pesaro, and the owner of Joe Amarena Sunset Beach – who share our passion to boost young talents‘ racing careers and without whom this project wouldn‘t have been possible.

Unai Orradre

Unai Orradre

The last Flat Track session at the VR46 Motor Ranch was very good, and I had a lot of fun again. I think that the Official Fan Club is a very important part because Valentino is followed and loved by many people, so it is something that is positive for both them and him. I liked the VR46 headquarters a lot but also the VR46 Store. They had very cool clothes, and that is why I have bought several pieces, also because I want to give some to my friends.

After the Master Camp I feel very good. I want to continue learning and improving in my motorsports career, and I want to show everything we have learned this week in the next race.

I believe that the Master Camp programme is a unique experience that very few people will get to take part in, that is why I have enjoyed it and have had fun to the fullest. I 100% have made the most of it!
Bahattin Sofuoglu

Bahattin Sofuoglu

The last Flat Track session was better for me, I did my best riding so far. The VR46 store and Official Fan Club were very cool, and I like it a lot there. The VR46 headquarters is big and even exceeded my expectations. I like it a lot!

I couldn’t pick a favourite part of the Master Camp. There are just too many different things to choose from. I feel like I’m more experienced, a better rider, and ready for the future. It taught me a lot of things that I will need in my racing career. I'm very happy to have been part of this huge organisation, so I want to give a big thanks to Yamaha, VR46, the staff, the sponsors, the coaches, and all others involved in making this possible.
Humberto Maier

Humberto Maier

The last Flat Track session was a lot of fun. I already had more experience, so I enjoyed riding the entire track. The VR46 Store and the Official Fan Club are amazing. You feel part of everything! Getting to visit the inside of the VR46 headquarters was one of the most exciting moments. It's huge!

The Master Camp has definitely been the best experience of my life as a rider. There were many challenges that I overcame and moments of joy. Thank you, Master Camp! I will never forget these days!
Fenton Harrison Seabright

Fenton Harrison Seabright

The last Flat Track session was great. We had a few races and we even got to use the complete track. But sadly, in the last race I had a coming together with another rider when he tried to come up the inside whilst four of us were battling. It left me with nowhere to go and I landed hard. So, my last Master Camp trip was to the hospital with a broken collarbone. Luckily, I did manage to get to the VR46 Headquarters in time for a tour. The merchandise and the massive wide range of it all was mind blowing.

The VR46 offices were one of the big highlights. It was impressive seeing where some of the big MotoGP decisions are made, and the actual size of it all was like an Aladdin’s cave - never ending and full of golden wonders.

Sadly, the Master Camp had to come to an end, but there are many great things that I have learned and dreams that came true that will stay with me forever along with some new friends. Thankfully I was one of the few that can actually say that I’ve been here. I’m hoping that it won’t be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but for the very few lucky people who will be given the opportunity to go after our group, I would say that the Master Camp is a totally surreal experience. To find the right words to describe it is so hard.
Iker Garcia Abella

Iker Garcia Abella

The last Flat Track session was the best of the week and the VR46 store and Official Fan Club are incredible. All the things they have, and how they work! The VR46 headquarters is very nice and very big. We had our graduation of the Master Camp there. I’m proud to have stayed there and to be part of it. I would give the Master Camp experience 10/10. It’s indescribable, if you don’t attend the programme, you don’t know how much fun this is.