March 15 2022
Yamaha’s Official WorldSBK team, run by Crescent Yamaha, was honoured by the Royal Automobile Club with the prestigious Torrens Trophy at a presentation dinner at its Pall Mall clubhouse in London last night, in recognition of the team’s 2021 achievements in becoming the first British team to win the Riders', Teams' and Manufacturers' titles in the FIM Superbike World Championship.
Team Principal Paul Denning accepted the award for Crescent and the team, in which his family’s racing legacy was recognised as well as Yamaha’s historical championship victory in 2021.
Crescent Motorcycle Company was founded by Denning’s grandfather Edward ‘Ted’ Denning – who sponsored Guernsey’s sand races before World War Two – and Crescent has been competing at the top level of national and international racing for the past 25 years. It has won races and Championships in everything from British Superbikes and World Superbikes to MotoGP, enduro and motocross, and since 2016 has run Yamaha’s official WorldSBK team from a state-of-the-art purpose-built facility in Dorset.
The Torrens Trophy recognises an individual or organisation considered to have made an outstanding contribution to the cause of safe and skilful motorcycling in the United Kingdom, technical excellence to further the cause of motorcycling in the UK, or shown outstanding skill in international motorcycling sporting events. It was first awarded in 1978 in memory of Arthur Bourne, a motorcycling journalist who wrote a column under the name ‘Torrens’.
Previous winners of the Torrens Trophy also include Yamaha’s MotoGP test rider Cal Crutchlow (awarded in 2016) for being first British rider to win a premier class World Championship Motorcycle Grand Prix in 35 years, as well as WorldSBK Champions Jonathan Rea, Tom Sykes and James Toseland for their individual achievements.
Two further trophies were awarded on Monday evening, to Peter Hickman for his trio of Isle of Man TT victories in 2019 and the world's fastest motorcycle road lap record of 136.415 mph at the Ulster Grand Prix, and to 2020 Torrens Trophy winner Emma Bristow, who claimed her seventh consecutive FIM Women's Trial World Championship title that year.
Guests included a number of past winners of the Torrens Trophy, motorcycling personalities and industry figures, including 2021 British Superbike Champion, McAMS Yamaha rider Tarran Mackenzie.
Founded in 1897 and awarded its Royal title by King Edward VII in 1907, the Royal Automobile Club is known as the oldest and most influential motoring organisation in the UK.
Paul Denning, Managing Director of Crescent and Yamaha WorldSBK Team Principal, was delighted to receive the prestigious award: “We have been aware of the Torrens Trophy for many years and have greatly enjoyed seeing such British stars as Sam Sunderland and Cal Crutchlow receive it in the past. For Crescent and Yamaha to be recognised by the Royal Automobile Club and the Torrens committee is a real honour and we are so proud to receive the 2021 award, which only adds to the satisfaction of the team’s achievements last year. We are now very much focused on looking forward towards the 2022 season and doing everything we can to again be competitive, but the Torrens Trophy is a great way to cap off 2021!”
Royal Automobile Club Chairman Ben Cussons said: “The Royal Automobile Club has always had a close association with the motorcycling world since the Club formed the Auto Cycle Club in 1903, which went on to become the Auto Cycle Union in 1947. I would like to extend a huge congratulations to our Torrens Trophy winners for the past three years and thank Peter, Emma and the Crescent-run Yamaha WorldSBK team for their outstanding achievements and contribution to the motorcycling scene – they are everything the Torrens Trophy represents; each of them providing a true showcase of British motorcycling skill and technical excellence.”