This past Saturday, May 4, the Quail Lodge Golf Club in Carmel, CA, held its 5th Annual Quail Motorcycle Gathering. To commemorate the special occasion, the event featured honored guest and three-time Yamaha 500cc Grand Prix World Champion Wayne Rainey.
As part of the fifth anniversary of the Quail Motorcycle Gathering, a new feature called “Legends of the Sport” was introduced to honor a key figure in the history of motorcycling each year. And, who better to begin the tradition with than one of motorcycle road racing’s all-time greatest champions? Wayne not only won three 500cc Grand Prix World Championships in a row, but he was also AMA Superbike Champion in 1983 and 1987, and he was a multi-time race winner in the rough-and-tumble world of U.S. flat track motorcycle racing, as well.
Wayne was accompanied at the Quail Motorcycle Gathering by one of his #1 Championship-winning Yamaha YZR500 500cc Grand Prix machines, specifically the 1991 YZR OWD3 on which he won his second consecutive World Grand Prix title.
Commenting on the event, Wayne said, “I’m honored to be the first recipient of “Legends of the Sport” at the Quail Motorcycle Gathering! It’s been 20 years since my last race, and to be recognized with this award reminds me of the many great memories I’ve had throughout my racing career. Also, having my ’91 YZR500 Yamaha there made the event that much sweeter! I’d like to thank Gordon McCall and everyone at the Quail Motorcycle Gathering for putting on a really awesome show.”
Bob Starr, General Manager of Communications for the Motorsports Group at Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., said, “We’re so proud that Wayne Rainey, one of Yamaha’s and America’s greatest motorcycle racing champions, was honored at this year’s Quail Motorcycle Gathering. Wayne is an iconic figure in the sport, a beloved member of the Yamaha family, global ambassador for the Yamaha brand, and one of the nicest, most decent people you will ever meet.”
Launched in 2009, the annual Quail Motorcycle Gathering honors both pre- and post-war-era sports and racing motorcycles. The event is held each May at Carmel’s Quail Lodge and Golf Club, which reopened its hotel and unveiled a $28 million resort-wide renovation on March 26, 2013.