The gruelling four hour torture test in the sandy regions around Mildura is always a highlight on the racing calendar, and for the WBR Yamaha team, with their Yamaha dealership within a few hours of the event, it proves to be a fruitful exercise in working with their customer base and providing support to the many Yamaha riders on hand.
To view the WBR Yamaha Hattah review: https://youtu.be/M7E8jF68l1A
For 2022, WBR Yamaha enlisted a couple of off road veterans to fly the team flag. Long-time Yamaha rider and the always consistent Riley Graham made the trip over from South Australia, while Beau Ralston joined him as the pair contested the event on YZ450F’s.
Beau Ralston turned in a good performance as he fought his way back from outside the top twenty after a fall on the opening lap. Ralston started the event from 15th place but dropped several positions on the opening lap. He completed lap one in 21st place but with over three hours of racing to come, he had the time and fitness to climb his way back through the field.
With each passing lap, he picked off a couple of riders at a time and relentless made his way back towards the top ten. With a big effort on the final lap, he crossed the finish line in eighth outright, but more impressively, third in the 450cc class behind the big name, off-road riders of Daniel Sanders and Josh Green.
“Aside from my opening lap, the weekend went well, and I had a great time. The WBR Yamaha guys did an amazing job of preparing the bike and we didn’t have an issue the whole time.
“You forget just how tough this race is and four hours racing a bike in rough and tough conditions takes its toll. But I loved doing it and had an awesome time. Thanks to the WBR Yamaha guys for everything as they had a lot going on but kept everything rolling smoothly,” Ralston said.
Just in behind Ralston, was teammate for the weekend, Riley Graham, who finished the day right behind Ralston in fourth in the 450cc category and tenth outright. Graham is a no-fuss rider who logs good laps and is always thereabouts. That plan of attack always works well at an event like Hattah and again served him well this year.
If it wasn’t for some last race cramping and fatigue, Graham may well have been higher up the finishing order, but he is still satisfied with his performance.
“First of all, a huge thank you to the WBR Yamaha team for their support at this event. Hattah is tough but to have a crew of good people behind you makes it easier and the WBR Yamaha guys were awesome all week. The bike was great, and they worked hard from the moment we arrived.
“Last year I was just outside the top five, but I think this year the competition was a lot deeper than it was. Having Waters, Sanders, Green all here makes for a great race and the competition is tough so while on paper my result might not have been as good as 2021, I feel I rode just as well.
“I don’t do a lot of racing these days, but I always like jumping back in for these endurance events. I go straight from here, which is a real physical test to the SA24 which is just as challenging but in different ways.
“I look forward to coming back again next year and hope I get to reunite with the WBR Yamaha team,” Graham offers.
For the WBR Yamaha crew its now back to their motocross roots where their focus shifts to the next round of the Pro MX in Coffs Harbour.