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They are the champions!

They are the champions!

Conch Tiglao

Yamaha Motor Philippines Marketing Section Manager Toni Boi Acuesta and Sales and Marketing Director Shinsuke Iida with the Circuit and Off-road Racing Teams and Motorsports and Safety Promotions Assistant Supervisor John Hanzel Leyva

Yamaha Motor Philippines introduces its 2024 racing season roster

What makes a champion? Being one isn’t only about taking the top spot or being number one. A champion is someone who embodies resilience, pushing through adversity with unwavering determination. A champion serves as an inspiration for others, someone who encourages and supports others so that they can reach their own greatness. 

For the past 14 years, Yamaha Motor Philippines has been building its own stable of champions on the racetrack. In 2010, the well-loved brand set an ambitious goal of bringing a Filipino racer into the prestigious MotoGP. Now, it’s moving much closer to its vision with its roster of racers, ready to take on this year’s racing season. 

In a special event last March 9, Yamaha Motor Philippines introduced the teams ready to take on the global stage and bring home a podium finish for the Philippines in 2024. 

“This past few years, we faced plenty of challenges,” said Yamaha Motor Philippines Motorsports and Safety Promotions Assistant Supervisor John Hanzel Leyva. “There were problems with motorcycles, processes, and even challenges during racing season. With that, we learned to have a strategy for 2024. In preparation for this year, we  included improvements on our bikes. We hired some instructors and a coach for (our racers) to improve, and we also built technical strategies.”

Despite the challenges, the past years have also seen a strong evolution in Yamaha Philippines’ Racing team members. Legend McKinley Kyle “Wonderboy” Paz, fresh from being the first Filipino to compete in the 2021 FIM CEV MOTO2 European Championship, spent the past few years training in Europe. He shared that he has been trying to surpass his limits and boundaries each and every time he trains or does practice runs. Teammates Gian Carlo and April King sharpened their skills, as well, by recently competing in the Asia Road Racing Championship Circuit (ARRC).

“We are also looking forward to having Bornok Mangosong and Pia Gabriel maintain their position as overall champions (for off-road) and Riders of the Year for 2024,” added Leyva. 

Mangosong, dubbed the King of Philippine Motocross and a three-time FIM Asia Rider of the Year, is ready to face this racing season with grit and determination. Despite all the accolades he’s received and won, Mangosong knows and understands that each year brings different challenges–and that’s what keeps him motivated. He also makes sure to impart all his learnings to fellow teammates and other Philippine racers. 

“We’ve taught them many times to prepare for opportunities like this,” he explained. “Because not all riders have this–to represent our country on the world stage. I am a firm believer that hard work, humility and consistency will take you further than talent. If they put this opportunity as their priority, we will have that number one spot.”

It’s not just endurance, agility and speed that make a champion. It’s also courage, discipline, consistency and the right mindset. And that’s what Yamaha Philippines’ Racing Team members are developing through coaching and training. Besides regular workout sessions to build strength and endurance, each racer/rider is also coached to develop confidence and that  winning mindset.

“In racing, dapat hindi lang kami physically nagte-training but we also have to be mentally prepared,” said Gabriel, the Princess of Philippine Motocross. “I appreciate how Kuya Borns (Mangosong) and other coaches talk to me before and after the race. They advise us on how to handle different challenges, both physically and mentally.”

The goal, according to Marketing Section Manager Toni Boi Acuesta, is to not only create more Filipino champions in motorsports but to also challenge competitors and other brands to work on it, to create more buzz and to support the local industry.

“For us, it’s not just winning, but to make motorsports even bigger,” he said. “There is a lot of potential here and the efforts of our Filipino riders are really overwhelming. Not everyone can race on the race track, but anyone can be an enthusiast when it comes to riding. We want to build that support and make sure we maximize the potential of Filipino racers.”

Yamaha Motor Philippines’ Circuit Racing Team is provided with upgraded machines to help them go for gold.

Kudos and best of luck to the Yamaha Philippines Racing Team!

Circuit Racing Team:

  • McKinley Kyle Paz
  • Gian Carlo Mauricio
  • April King Mascardo

Off-road Racing Team:

See Also

  • Bornok Mangosong
  • Pia Gabriel

Satellite Racing Teams:

4S1M EVO  Team

  • J.E Inguito
  • Gupita Kresna

SEC Team

  • Andrei Reyes
  • Bethany Tolentino

R3 bLU cRU 

  • Moy Reyes
  • Zain Kaizzer Doblada
  • Mytchell Joshua Ngo

Support our racers as they compete on the global stage! Visit and follow these channels for race schedules and live streaming: