This year Herbalife South Africa partnered with Yamaha Distributors South Africa (YDSA) as joint title sponsors of their endurance off-road, factory-supported, motorcycle racing team, the Herbalife bLU cRU Yamaha Racing Team.
Yamaha created the bLU cRU Yamaha Team in 2017 to provide a stepping stone for the next generation of off-road motorbike endurance racers who come from disadvantaged backgrounds. Being selected on merit for the bLU cRU team provides the first-tier goal for ultimately being selected for the Yamaha factory team.“We’re extremely pleased with this partnership as it is the first time that Herbalife South Africa has ties with the sport of endurance off-road motorbike racing,” says Thilo Naidoo, Herbalife’s Country Director for Southern Africa. “The bLU cRU team’s passion and commitment to excellence align with our values at Herbalife and we hope to help them in their quest to becoming part of Yamaha’s factory team. We also believe that our support will help raise awareness around the importance of nutrition and leading a healthy, active lifestyle.”
The Herbalife sponsorship is both monetary and product based. Leveraging Herbalife’s expertise, the sponsorship has lent nutritional assistance to the bLU cRU riders. This includes product and product support. The Company’s Herbalife24 range offers comprehensive performance nutrition for athletes and amateur sports enthusiasts. The products are specially formulated for pre-, during- and post-workout nutrition and have become an integral part of bLU cRU’s performance regime.
Commenting on the sponsorship agreement, Adrian Bac, Team Manager of the Herbalife bLU cRU Yamaha team, said: “Yamaha are absolutely thrilled to partner with Herbalife on our Herbalife bLU cRU Yamaha Race Team project. Welcoming a brand new sponsor into the sport of National Enduro motorcycle racing has not only been a significant step forward for Yamaha, but also for the sport as a whole. The similarities in our two companies’ brand ethos and common commitment to product greatness really do make this partnership a natural ‘fit’”.The up and coming bLU cRU endurance racing stars are 26 year-old Thabang Katees from Pretoria and 32 year-old Piwe Zulu from Margate. Thabang was selected in 2011 to become part of a sport transformation programme driven by Motorsport South Africa and in 2016, Yamaha was asked to support him as a rider of merit in their factory-supported team to give him the opportunities he deserves in the dirt bike racing sector. Piwe started riding in 2010 and has ridden for KTM Durban and RBS Yamaha in Pinetown, amongst others.
“I joined the bLU cRU team in 2017 and am so enjoying the immense support that is offered to the riders,” said Katees. “We are currently training hard for the Motul Roof of Africa and I know that the Herbalife sponsorship is going to significantly benefit my training regime.” Zulu adds that he is really looking forward to building his strength and maximizing the benefits of proper sports nutrition through the sponsorship.
“In Thabang and Piwe we have athletes that show true potential to become really great riders, and they exert the determination and commitment to succeed,” adds Bac.