Off Road

Hollis, Phillips and Merriman to Ballard’s Yamaha in 2011

Posted:

Former Yamaha Australian Off-Road Champion, Chris Hollis, will be back on home soil next season campaigning for outright victory as part of the Ballard's Wellard Yamaha Off-Road Team.

Another bright, young addition to the squad will be Tasmanian Matthew Phillips, who will contest the 2011 AORC and Mackay Australian 4-Day Enduro (A4DE) in the Championship E3 Class, aboard the big-bore YZ450F (YZ475).

Five-time world champion, Stefan Merriman, returns to the outfit for 2011, with fresh hopes for victory aboard a Yamaha 250F in Championship E1.

Team manager, Geoff Ballard, said the full line-up would again include himself (five-time AORC Master's Champ) as well as reigning AORC and A4DE Women's victor, Jessica Gardiner, a 'mystery' Swedish rider with the surname: Granquist, and son, Josh.

"Honestly, I believe we can win all the championship classes [E1, E2, E3, master's and women's] with the team we've got for next year,' Ballard said.

"We've got some great talent and with the new additions, we'll be firing on all cylinders, that's for sure.

"Chris feels he can match the speed of [current AORC and A4DE champ, Toby Price] and is looking good on the bike.

"He's been testing at our facility the last two days on the WR450F and YZ450F and you couldn't wipe the smile off his face.

"He's a fun guy to be around and we're really happy to welcome him back to the team.

"Chris became the first rider in history to win the AORC and A4DE in the same year: in 2008, as a member of the Ballard's Wellard Yamaha team, aboard a WR450F.

"Injury plagued his efforts in Europe this year, but he has recovered and is fit, healthy and back on form."

Hollis, 26, from Port Macquarie (NSW), said he was "over the moon" to be back on Yamaha and would be giving it his all to take home another 'dirty double' (AORC and A4DE outright wins) next season. Ballard said the team were also "very excited" to welcome rising star, Matt Phillips (from Wynyard on Tasmania's northwest coast).

At just 17-years-of-age, Phillips will be one of the youngest in the championship ranks.

"He'll also be one of the fastest and a force to be reckoned with on the YZ475," Ballard said.

"Matt burst onto the enduro scene at the four-day this year, where he was top-three Outright in a few special tests and ended up finishing a commendable eighth Outright.

"For such a young rider, Matt has shown incredible character and sportsmanship and above all, speed and ability."

Phillips will have one experienced teammate in particular to look up to, with Australian number two (for off-road and enduro), Stefan Merriman, back in blue for 2011.

Merriman, 37, from Nelson Bay, said he was looking forward to the change of machine and would be aiming to better his number two ranking.

The team will also have an exotic twist with the addition of Sweden motocross rider, Stefan Granquist - son of racing legend Pelle Granquist - who will be trying his hand at enduro on a WR450F in the Expert E2/3 Class.

Also vying for championship class crowns will be Yamaha Motor Australia riders Kirk Hutton (from Brisbane) and Tom McCormack (Byron Bay). Hutton and McCormack both plan to ride YZ250F's in national meetings and YZ450F's in state events.

Hutton, 37, will be looking to add to his four Australian and 10 Queensland Enduro titles and said he was "thrilled" to continue his decade-long partnership with Yamaha.

A calendar for the 2011 AORC has yet to be finalised. The 2011 A4DE is being held near Mackay (Queensland) from April 20th to 23rd (www.a4de.com).

Main Photo: Former Yamaha Australian Off-Road Champion, Chris Hollis, will be back on home soil next season campaigning for outright victory as part of the Ballard's Wellard Yamaha Off-Road Team.

Share Article:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Tumblr
Pinterest
Reddit
Email
Print

More News: Latest Headlines

More News: Latest Headlines

Motocross

Tim Gajser – Motivated for 2024

Dirt Track

Somersby Super TT Meeting Opens NSW Dirt Track Season

Motocross

MXGP Of Patagonia-Argentina Entry List Released

Supercross

A Patient Jett Lawrence Regains AMA Supercross Championship Lead at Glendale

Supercross

Hand Injury Sees Chase Sexton In A Battle To Salvage Points At Glendale

Supercross

Ken Roczen Takes Glendale Supercross Victory While RJ Hampshire Takes 250SX Class Win

EnduroCross

The Billy Bolt Win Streak Continues At SuperEnduro World Championship in Budapest

Trials

Toni Bou Opens The 2024 X-Trial Season With A Dominant Victory

Motocross

Tim Gasjer Fit And On The Hunt For A Sixth World Championship

Supercross

Jett Lawrence Back On Top In Detroit

Motocross

2024 Nestaan Husqvarna Factory Racing Lineup Breaks Cover

Motocross

Team HRC Honda Return To The MX2 Class For 2024 Motocross World Championship

What's On This Week

Gippsland Region MX - R1
Wonthaggi
Sunday, February 25th, 2024
NZ Motocross Championships - R2
Balclutha
Sunday, February 25th, 2024
FIM Sand Race World Cup - Round 2
Enduro del Verano (ARG)
Sunday, February 25th, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 7
AT&T Stadium -Arlington, TX
Saturday, February 24th, 2024
FIM SuperEnduro World Championship - R6
GP Bulgaria, Sofia
Saturday, February 24th, 2024

Featured:

First Look At The All New 2024 Beta 450RX

2024 Yamaha YZ250F Review

Enhance Your Bike’s Protection With Force Accessories Custom Clutch Cover

2023 Sherco 300 SE Factory Ride Review

Michelin StarCross 6 – Inspected

Drink Wirelessly with SoleStream

What's On This Week

Gippsland Region MX - R1
Wonthaggi
Sunday, February 25th, 2024
NZ Motocross Championships - R2
Balclutha
Sunday, February 25th, 2024
FIM Sand Race World Cup - Round 2
Enduro del Verano (ARG)
Sunday, February 25th, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 7
AT&T Stadium -Arlington, TX
Saturday, February 24th, 2024
FIM SuperEnduro World Championship - R6
GP Bulgaria, Sofia
Saturday, February 24th, 2024