Skip to content


After victories at the Enduropale du Touquet, in France, and Enduro del Verano, in Argentina, Todd Kellet races a factory YZ450FM in MXGP.

In the fast-paced world of racing, unexpected opportunities can catapult riders into new territories. For Todd Kellett, the reigning FIM Sand Races World Cup Champion, such an opportunity arose when Yamaha Motor Europe extended an invitation to join the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP team at the MXGP of Sardegna, in Riola-Sardo.

Kellett, fresh from victories at the Enduropale du Touquet, in France, and Enduro del Verano, in Argentina, initially had his sights set on a well-deserved holiday. However, the chance to race MXGP aboard a factory YZ450FM proved too enticing to resist. “I fancied my chances to come to help the guys out,” Kellett recalled. “I was on holiday, completely relaxed, but when I got the call, I thought, what an opportunity. I certainly couldn’t turn it down!”

“Beach racing and MXGP are two totally different sports,” he smiled, “My dad said it best. It’s like a tennis player, playing squash.” Adjusting to the factory bike and the track, which was much tighter and smaller than what he was used to, proved to be a learning curve. “The bikes are different,” he acknowledged. “But at the same time, after a couple of days, I managed to find it quite homely. The ergonomics of the bike are very similar.”

Amidst the excitement, the Yamaha ace found himself facing unfamiliar challenges. “I’ve never been here in Riola,” he admitted, acknowledging the stark contrast between beach racing and MXGP. Adjusting to the tighter tracks and the intricacies of the factory bike presented a learning curve. Yet, his determination shone through as he quickly adapted to the new environment.

“Recovery is more important in MXGP,” he observed. “In beach racing, once you’re done, you’re done for the day, you know, you’re going home until next weekend. So here it is really important, and perhaps difficult for someone like me to try and recover after each session on the bike.”

Despite the initial hurdles, TK98 showed his incredible grit. After the first race was spoiled by an untimely fall, the Brit bounced back with a vengeance in Race Two and scored five MXGP World Championship points, ending his day with a hard-fought 16th-place finish.

“It was an incredible experience to race in Sardinia”, he smiled, “I just want to say a massive thanks to Yamaha and the whole team for the opportunity. Over the last two weeks, I’ve put in a lot of hard work, which paid off in Race Two. It was a little bit frustrating to crash in both races, but overall, it has been a really good weekend.”