Yamaha VR46 Master Camp graduates Tomas Casas and Jake LeClair will lead the charge for Yamaha’s bLU cRU in the 2021 Canadian Superbike Championship. Both riders are anxious to return to competition after sitting out the truncated, COVID-impacted 2020 CSBK program.
Defending Pro Sport Bike Champion Will Hornblower will be supported by Yamaha Financial Services, rounding out a strong three-rider Pro lineup for 2021.
Casas, who finished fourth in his rookie Pro Superbike season in 2019, is hungry for a return to action. The Peterborough, ON-based rider was full of optimism and momentum going into 2020 before the pandemic wiped the schedule clear.
“2020 was a tough and different year for everybody,” said Casas, the defending two-time CSBK Pro Sport Bike Champion. “My summer was particularly different, with little time spent at the track and lots of extra hours working. Simply put, I am eager to get back to racing and fighting to put my YZF-R1 on the box in 2021. With the support of Yamaha Motor Canada and all my sponsors, I am ready to take on 2021.”
While Casas battles it out in Pro Superbike, LeClair will be making his Pro rookie debut in the Pro Sport Bike class on his YZF-R6. The 19-year-old from Blackstock, ON won the first bLU cRU Factory Ride Award presented in road racing in 2018 and finished second in Amateur Sport Bike as a rookie in 2019. Despite the halt in his career momentum during the pandemic, LeClair is ready to suit up.
“2020 was not ideal for my first year of pro,” said the rookie youngster. “I didn’t get as much track time as I would’ve liked. I spent most of the year working and riding dirt bikes to get ready for this year, so I’m excited to get out there for 2021 on my YZF-R6.”
Casas and LeClair are the only two Canadians to ever attend the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp in Italy (Casas in 2017 and LeClair in 2019). Both riders had the chance to meet and speak with MotoGP legend Valentino Rossi, learn from his VR46 Riding Academy instructors, train in the gym with MotoGP star Franco Morbidelli and ride the legendary Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli.
Hornblower will carry the Pro Sport Bike No. 1 plate into 2021 with new livery thanks to support from Yamaha Financial Services. The Sarnia, ON native participated in the 2020 Canadian Tire Motorsport Park CSBK round, where he qualified in the pole position, coming within half a second of the Pro Sport Bike lap record.
“I’m super excited to have official backing from Yamaha Financial Services for my 2021 campaign in CSBK Pro Sportbike.” Said Hornblower, the 2019 CSBK Pro Sport Bike Champion. “2021 is going to be a culmination of everything I’ve learned from the past 10 years, and we’re going to show why the number 1 is on my R6.”
The Canadian Superbike Championship kicks off its 41st season with a Pro Superbike-only event at Calabogie Motorsports Park on June 4 and 5.