Rising Japanese racing star Kohta Nozane will once again join Australian veteran Broc Parkes and young German racer Marvin Fritz to compete in the FIM Endurance World Championship (EWC) as a full-time rider with the YART Yamaha Official EWC Team (YART) for the upcoming 2017–2018 season.
Nozane will be trackside with his teammates at the season-opening Bol d’Or 24-hour endurance race scheduled for September 15 to 17 of this year. The team will be out to put in a strong start to their campaign to claim the EWC crown they narrowly missed out on last season. In his second year of racing at the world level, Nozane will be aiming to make another step forward as a racer.
In 2015, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. established the Yamalube Racing Team as its youth squad in the premier JSB1000 class of the All Japan Road Race Championship with the goal of producing riders that can make the step to world-class competition. As a member of the team, Nozane secured positive results that earned him a move up to the Yamaha Factory Racing Team alongside racing legend Katsuyuki Nakasuga for the 2017 season. Soon after, he was selected to join the YART team from the second round of the EWC season at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Despite racing in Europe in the EWC for the first time, he played a major part in YART securing consecutive 2nd place finishes at Le Mans and the 8 Hours of Oschersleben, and then 4th at the 8 Hours of Slovakia Ring and 5th at the Suzuka 8 Hours. These results put the Austria-based team in 3rd place last season.
Competing also back in his home country of Japan, Nozane took his first victory in the premier JSB1000 class at Round 4 of the 2017 season at Twin Ring Motegi, and followed it up with his first-ever pole position and a second win at Round 6 also held at Motegi. He has made rapid progress as a racer and his continued participation in the EWC will help further his skills and racecraft.
“I’m really happy to once again be able to race with YART full-time for another EWC season. I’d also like to thank Team Manager Mandy Kainz and Yamaha for giving me another great opportunity to race on the world stage. Last season, the environment was entirely new for me and I was riding on circuits I’d never been to before. I also wasn’t able to show what I felt I could do at my home round of the Suzuka 8 Hours and we weren’t able to take the title, so it was a painful reminder of how far I still have to go as a rider. But I’ve been able to take two wins in the All Japan JSB1000 class this season, so it’s undeniable that racing and gaining experience in the EWC has helped me improve. The upcoming 2017–2018 season will be my second time in the championship, so I won’t be able to make any excuses this time. No matter the event or circuit, I want to be fast, race hard for the team and my teammates, and help bring YART the title so I can show everybody how far I’ve grown as a racer.”
Born: October 29, 1995
2017: 6th in All Japan Championship JSB1000 class (as of Round 6)
2016: 5th in All Japan Championship JSB1000 class
2015: 7th in All Japan Championship JSB1000 class
2014: 8th in All Japan Championship JSB1000 class
2013: All Japan Championship J-GP2 class Champion
2012: 3rd in All Japan Championship J-GP2 class
2011: 7th in All Japan Championship J-GP2 class
2010: 9th in All Japan Championship J-GP2 class
YART Yamaha Official EWC Team
The YART Yamaha Official EWC Team is managed by Mandy Kainz and is an officially supported Yamaha team in the Endurance World Championship (EWC). Founded in 2001, they placed 3rd in 2005 and won four out of six races in 2009 to be crowned champion. In the 2016–2017 season, the team’s lineup featured Broc Parkes, Marvin Fritz and Kohta Nozane, and they were constantly at the front battling for the win in almost every race. As a Yamaha factory team at the Suzuka 8 Hours season finale, YART placed 5th and took 3rd overall in the championship.
Endurance World Championship Results