Yamaha made its highly anticipated return to WorldSBK in 2016 after an absence of four years with the Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team with Rizla run by Crescent Racing. The team’s strategy is clear - to make full use of the all-new YZF-R1 to challenge for victory in the premier production FIM Superbike World Championship series. The Japanese marque’s impressive history in the championship, which includes its title-winning and record-breaking year with Ben Spies in 2009, combined with the stunning base specification of the YZF-R1 offers an unrivalled opportunity to campaign for victory honours.
Based in Dorset, on the South Coast of England, Crescent Racing has been competing in WorldSBK since 2012; with the previous 15 years spent in the British Championship - at Superbike, Supersport and Superstock levels. The team's manager, Paul Denning - once a racer himself - also spent seven years managing a MotoGP team in the sport's premier class. Highlights from the past 20 seasons include a spectacular year in 2004 - winning the British Superbike title with John Reynolds, as teammate Yukio Kagayama secured third in the championship - with two vice-championships and five other national titles claimed. Crescent has amassed 47 wins and 109 podiums in BSB alone, with a further 2 wins, 5 pole positions and 32 podiums on the world stage in MotoGP and WorldSBK competition so far.
The 2017 season saw the Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team - in just their second year back in the WorldSBK Championship – record six podiums with riders Alex Lowes (4) and Michael van der Mark (2) showing improvement throughout the season. Both riders return for the 2018 season to spearhead the team's assault on the title.