The Yamaha Champions Riding School (YCRS) has entered into an agreement with VETMotorsports to provide motorcycle rider training to United States military veterans at each of its two-day ChampSchool classes.
VETMotorsports is an award-winning, non-clinical outreach program that honors and empowers active military, veterans with service-connected injuries and their caregivers, as well as Gold Star parents through active participation in motorsports. The program recruits participants, gives them hands-on access to a variety of motorsports experiences, and covers all expenses for them to take part in the experience.
With the support of Yamaha, which provides the ChampSchool motorcycles, YCRS will leave one seat open in every class in 2019 for a veteran so that they can feel the rehabilitating effects that motorcycling provides.
“It’s been a privilege to coach Marine Corps riders over the last few years and we want to show how much we appreciate what our warriors in all branches of the military do for our country,” said Nick Ienatsch, lead instructor for YCRS. “These guys and gals put it all on the line so that we can be free to ride our motorcycles every day of the week if we choose. We are more than honored to be able to give back in any way possible.”
“We lose 22 veterans a day to suicide,” said VETMotorsports Founder and Executive Director Peter Cline, “and that’s something we’re working very hard to stop. It’s why we founded VETMotorsports and why we’re so proud to partner with YCRS to not only honor our brave service members, but give them something to learn, be excited about and engage with.”
“My dad has a saying: You’ll never see a motorcycle parked at a shrink’s office,” said YCRS “Crew Chief” Keith Culver. “I often refer to riding as ‘helmet therapy,’ so we’re pretty keen to show how the joys, challenges, and required focus of good motorcycle riding will help our veterans.”
“As an avid rider and road racing enthusiast, I had long wanted to attend YCRS,” said VETMotorsports Board Vice President Joe Bianco. “In addition to their well-earned reputation as a top-notch riding program, I’d also heard some amazing things about what they were doing to enhance rider safety for my alma mater, the Marine Corps. I can say, with great conviction — and after doing all the big-name courses out there — that YCRS changed my riding for life. Even more important than the skills they helped me develop, though, were their commitment to the concept of ‘helmet therapy’ and the way they empowered their students to be better riders. It felt like a fantastic complement to what we’re doing at VETMotorsports and I’m glad we were able to find a way to work together. We’re extremely excited about the opportunity to share this great experience with other veterans.”
Veterans wishing to take part in the program can contact VETMotorsports at 614-407-3894 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.