The Yamaha Racing Heritage Club (YRHC) was formed to safeguard and showcase the manufacturer's rich racing legacy. That history was honoured in some style at the Sachsenring Classic, where they entertained the fans with Yamaha riders past and present. The historic Sachsenring Circuit is celebrating its 95th anniversary in 2022, and therefore, it seemed fitting that the guest of honour should be 1971 125cc & 1973 250cc World Champion Dieter Braun.
Braun is famous not only for his illustrious career but also for the moment immediately after he, a West German, won the 1971 250cc East German GP at the track. During the podium ceremony, the organisers were forced to play the West German anthem, with tens of thousands of East German fans singing along to the words, which was forbidden at the time. It was one of those moments where sport transcended political barriers, but this caused an uproar with the organisers and eventually led to the East German GP being stricken from the calendar.
Braun not only took time to sign autographs and meet the fans but he was also reunited with a lovingly restored version of the TD3 on which he won the 1973 250cc title, much to his delight. Joining him in the YRHC festivities was 15x World Champion Giacomo Agostini. The Italian also played his part in recreating history as he took to the track for the YRHC parade laps on the TZ750 he won his last ever World Championship race at Hockenheim in 1977, with the fans ecstatic to see the 80-year-old back in action on German soil.
Another Yamaha legend who helped to bring back memories for the fans was 1983 250cc World Champion Christian Sarron, who won three GPs on German soil during his career, including his first ever 500cc victory in 1985. Celebrating German success in the more modern era were 2000 WorldSSP Champion Jörg Teuchert, 2012 Moto3 World Champion and 2018 WorldSSP Champion Sandro Cortese, plus current Yamalube YART Yamaha Official EWC Team rider, Marvin Fritz. It was a novel experience for Cortese and Fritz as they both got to experience what it was like to ride a classic two-stroke race bike for the first time in their career, while Teuchert took part in the track action on his championship-winning R6.
There was also a stunning collection of bikes on display, spanning Yamaha’s entire racing history from one of their first factory race bikes, the 1957 YD-A 250cc, all the way up to Fabio Quartararo’s 2021 MotoGP title-winning M1. Other rare highlights included a 1967 250cc Yamaha Noguchi DS3, a 1969 50cc RF302, and the FZ750 that Eddie Lawson rode to victory at the 1985 Imola 200.
Next up for the YRHC is the CRMC Classic Motorcycle Festival at Donington Park from the 30th-31st of July, and you can relive all of the best action from the Sachsenring Classic in the video below.