Yamaha WSBK team gains sponsor

New sponsor also backs Ducati satellite team

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, May. 07, 2009
Ben Spies’ World Superbike Yamaha R1 will have a new look at the May 8-10 round in Monza, Italy.

Italian food brand Sterilgarda has signed on to sponsor the Yamaha World Superbike team and riders Spies and Tom Sykes in select races for the 2009 season.

Both riders will wear Sterilgarda-branded leathers and their R1 Superbikes will be similarly liveried.

“We are really happy to be able to link our brand with the Yamaha World Superbike Team,” says Nando Sarzi, the owner of Sterilgarda Alimenti. “We’re really excited to be able share the racing emotions and success with the team, starting with Monza this weekend, the home race for both the team and our company. Professionalism and quality are two common, shared elements that drive both Sterilgarda and Yamaha in the search for great success.”

Ben Spies' R1 will be dressed in Sterilgarda livery in Italy.The Yamaha WSBK team has had a strong start in the 2009 season with Spies currently sitting second in the standings and Sykes sixth while racing the new R1. Despite their early success, the factory team has gone without a major sponsor.

Sponsorships have been harder to come by this season as companies look for ways to cut costs during the current economic downturn. But with the team’s competitive start, Yamaha has found a backer in Sterilgarda.

“It’s fantastic to have Sterilgarda onboard,” says Laurens Klein Koerkamp, Manager, Yamaha Motor Europe Racing Division. “It’s very positive to have such a well known brand in the paddock recognize how successful the Yamaha World Superbike Team is and want to be part of it. We’re looking forward to working together and this being the start of a long term relationship.”

Neither Yamaha nor Sterilgarda made mention of the food company’s title sponsorship of the BRC Racing Ducati satellite team. The team’s lone rider, the 2008 British Superbike Champion, Shane Byrne, currently sits 13th in the standings. BRC Racing initially planned on entering two riders for 2009 but was forced to release rider Alex Polita due to the loss of sponsorships. BRC Racing is still currently listed as Team Sterilgarda on the World Superbike Championship website.