Bacon and Green Headline Massive Yamaha AORC Presence

After winning nine Australian Off Road Championships in 2022, Yamaha Australia aren’t resting on their laurels for 2023 and present a massive campaign headlined by Kyron Bacon and Josh Green.

Yamaha Australia, in line with their internationally recognised ‘Step up’ program will now have a range of support levels in off road that can take riders from the 85cc J1 class to the top of the tree and winning outright championships with the ShopYamaha team.

The ShopYamaha Off Road team will again contest the AORC, Hattah and other selected events with Kyron Bacon and Josh Green at the controls. JGR Yamaha returns with the same team of Jess Gardiner, Jeremy Carpentier and Dannielle MacDonald while new for 2023 will be the introduction of the bLU cRU support team of Cooper Sheidow, Wil Dennett and Jett Yarnold and for the first time, Yamaha Junior Racing will have a presence in off road with Harley Hutton and Marcus Nowland.

After taking all before him in 2022, the Tasmanian based Kyron Bacon is back with the ShopYamaha Team and looking to keep his near vertical ascendency on the off road ladder going in 2023. On board his trusty 250cc machine, Bacon was not just the winner of the E1 AORC and A4DE, he won outright, a feat that hasn’t been done since Daniel Milner in 2013.

He will again stay in the E1 class and look to improve over his 2022 campaign.

“2022 was a breakout year for me and I’m aiming for more of the same in 2023,” Kyron suggests. “Myself, the ShopYamaha team as well as Yamaha Australia have a great relationship and I didn’t even look at doing anything else other than staying with all the people that have contributed to my success over the past 12 months.

“Being based in Tassie can make it hard for a team but AJ and Brandon make sure we have everything we need to be ready to race and the team works well on race days.

“It looks like another big year of racing and I’m pretty keen to get started. I will continue to do a few events in Tassie, as well as the AORC rounds and I wouldn’t mind swinging on a 450 at Hattah if the team lets me. I had a good break after the last round of AORC, got a chance to check out the MotoGP and I’m back into training now and can’t wait for the first round of the year and get back to racing again,” he ends.

For Josh Green, 2023 marks his 11th year with Yamaha Motor Australia and team manager AJ Roberts. Green has proven as durable as he is fast as he continues to find ways to increase his speed and performance at a national level. Green won the E2 division this year and was third outright in another outstanding season for the veteran.

His experience also comes in handy as it was Green that was the man who navigated Bacon to his A4DE win as the youngster had never competed in a A4DE before. It was Green, sometimes at the sacrifice of his own result, steering Bacon through the mayhem of a four event. But Green isn’t ready to hang the boots up yet.

“I kept telling AJ, when you find a faster guy, I will stop,” but he hasn’t been able to find one yet,” Green laughs. “While I’m into my thirties, I still love so much about what we do. I love riding, I love training and being outdoors and I still enjoy the challenge of racing guys like Kyron. I know I don’t have a lot of racing left at this level, but while I still feel motivated and I still enjoy it, I’m racing and it’s going to be with Yamaha and AJ,” Green stated.

Jess Gardiner, the multi time national off-road champion is back for 2023 and again steering her JGR Yamaha Team through another season. Building closer ties with Yamaha in 2022 enabled JGR to not only compete at AORC events but also develop a coaching side of the business as well as play an ambassador role in attracting women to the sport with Yamaha.

Gardiner, Carpentier and rising star, Danielle MacDonald will again be the team with Carpentier moving to the E1 class aboard the WR450F while MacDonald will make the jump from her trusty YZ125 to the YZ250F for season 2023.

“Last season was a successful one for the team as myself and Danielle were able to win championships while Jeremy was a contender at many rounds until an injury slowed him down. But we are all back and ready to go again for next year with a focus to continue Danielle’s development as well as encourage more woman to take up and then compete in dirt bikes.

“I have seen a lot of growth with women wanting to start riding and many of them joined the sport last year. The next step is to encourage them to try an event like the AORC as its great fun and well organised. I’m sure once they do one event, they will be hooked,” Gardiner said.

There will now be a Yamaha bLU cRU support ride to help bridge the gap between junior riders and professionals in off road racing. Using the Yamaha bLU cRU support vehicle, Cooper Sheidow , with assisitance from Pitmans Yamaha in SA, Wil Dennett (EJ), and Jett Yarnold via the Super-Moto Dealership in Armadale (EJ), will compete with the support of Yamaha, Yamalube as well as some technical support from the ShopYamaha team to give young riders a pathway up the AORC ladder.

“This is something we have talked about for some time and we have been able to bring it to fruition in 2023,” explains ShopYamaha team manager, AJ Roberts. “There hasn’t been a consistent progression within off road and now I feel we have things in place to not only support but encourage riders within off road. Cooper, Wil and Jett are all young and upcoming riders who we feel have the right attributes to race at the highest level in Australia and the formation of this team should allow the riders and families to focus on their riding and training to become better for the future,” AJ offered.

And for the first time, Yamaha Junior Racing will now branch out into the off-road world. Long been a motocross only domain, YJR will now support riders in off-road and beginning in 2023, Harley Hutton, son of former AORC Champ, Kirk, will be teamed up with 2022 J2 winner, Marcus Nowland.

Before Harley and Marcus have been loyal Yamaha riders and are now rewarded with extra support to contest the 2023 series.

“YJR has had a successful record in motocross, so it was about time we transferred it across to off road,” Roberts adds. “Yamaha Australia have a development path in motocross as well as road racing and now we have a complete path in off road for both males and female riders. Young riders can progress through YJR, to bLU cRU support or JGR before going onto the ShopYamaha team.

“Yamaha Australia have always been a huge supporter of off-road, and this just adds to what is already a big investment in Australian racing. We look forward to working with all the Yamaha riders in this years’ series and can’t wait to go racing in 2023,” he ends.