Watts Wins NZ Enduro Class For PWR Yamaha

Riding his Yamaha YZ250FX, 21-year-old Watts comfortably finished ahead of Nelson’s Bailey Basalaj in this category.

Watts’ final overall ranking remains under appeal after the talented Tauranga-based, former Wairoa rider won 12 from 12 tests at the fourth and final round near Martinborough over the June 10 and 11 weekend to claim the top spot. However, a protest was lodged around Watts receiving outside assistance and the time penalty punishment imposed dropped him to second overall for the series, and handed the premier title to North Canterbury’s Ethan McBreen.

The PWR Yamaha team has appealed the protest and Motorcycling New Zealand (MNZ) are currently reviewing it.

Yamaha Motor New Zealand’s Motorsport Manager Josh Coppins backs PWR Yamaha’s decision to appeal.

“As a brand we were disappointed with the way the protest went down and we are taking it through the correct procedures to understand the full details of what actually happened. We are looking forward to seeing the outcome,” he says.

“It was a short series with some tough conditions and we were thankful for some great results and riding from Tommy, plus all the other Yamaha riders and bLUcRU-supported riders.”

Coppins had nothing but praise for PWR Yamaha Team Manager Paul Whibley.

“A big thanks goes to Paul for all his work behind the scenes. He does a great job for the brand and has an amazing understanding of the sport. We really appreciate his efforts and having him involved. We are looking forward to next year already and we are starting to make some plans.”

Watts had taken over the title chase lead at the third round of four in the Yamaha-sponsored series, near Porirua at the beginning of June, where he was unbeaten in all 15 tests over the two days. The controversial end to Watts’ superb season, which saw him collect 36 wins from the total of 47 tests over the four rounds, hasn’t dimmed his enjoyment of enduro racing.

The season went well. I wasn’t that happy with the first round, so I changed the set up and stuck with it for the next three rounds. I was really stoked with how smoothly the bike went through the whole series.”

“Huge thanks to everyone that has helped and supported me this season,” Watts says.

Whibley says that after a slow start at round one, Watts has been the dominant rider.

“I think Tommy can be really proud of his performance this season. I can’t think of another rider, who has had such a high win rate in the tests, for a number of years. Winning every test in the last couple of rounds was something special.”

The PWR Yamaha team is in the process of finalising its cross country riders to compete in the recently-released, three-round national series in November and December. More information will be revealed in the coming weeks.


1st Ethan McBreen

2nd Tommy Watts (YZ250FX) – 1st in class, AA - E1 0-200 2Str, 0-300 4Str

3rd Sam Parker


1st Ethan McBreen

2nd Tommy Watts (YZ250FX) – 1st in class, AA - E1 0-200 2Str, 0-300 4Str

3rd Bailey Basalaj