Kawasaki kicks off the 2007 Supercross Season
The atrium walls of Kawasaki’s Irvine headquarters echoed with cheers on Wednesday afternoon as employees welcomed their 2007 Kawasaki racing teams. Hosted by live announcer and television broadcaster, Jamie Little, the third annual Kawasaki Supercross kick-off rally showcased more riders than ever before. In all, 19 factory supported Kawasaki riders will be on the track for the 2007 AMA Supercross season.
The lime green clad crowd roared as Jamie Little introduced returning four-time AMA Champion James Stewart, and his new factory Monster Energy Kawasaki teammate, Tim Ferry. The two were accompanied by Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki riders: Ryan Villopoto, Brett Metcalfe and Chris Gosselaar, and Christophe Pourcel. Teammate Ben Townley was unable to attend as he was in Florida training. Also in attendance were Kawasaki’s two new satellite teams, Cernic’s Kawasaki featuring the two-rider team of Paul Carpenter and Jeff Gibson and Team Motosport Kawasaki featuring riders Steve Boniface, Kyle Chisholm, Matt Boni and Bobby Kiniry.
The rally also celebrated Kawasaki’s new racing partnership with the Monster Beverage Company. The new agreement gives Monster Energy the opportunity to expand their racing program into several new championship series, in addition to continuing their successful partnership with the Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team. Kawasaki Director of Marketing Bruce Stjernstrom joked that “since signing the contract with Monster Energy, Kawasaki had seen an 11 percent increase in productivity among employees.”
The event concluded with the presentation of the championship rings to 2006 World Supercross Champion James Stewart and 2006 AMA Motocross Lites Champion and Rookie of the Year Ryan Villopoto. In a short speech, Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A. President Scott Kiyama commented on the number of riders they are supporting in 2007 stating, “I am running out of fingers to count them all on.”
The season kick-off, followed by lunch, Monster Energy drinks, and Hansen’s natural sodas, proved just the ticket to heighten enthusiasm for all in attendance. The 2007 Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross Series begins this Saturday, January 6 at Angel Stadium in Anaheim.