By: Robert Janis
A Q&A with Suzuki
It seems that the top manufacturers of ATVs
are involved in some form of racing and Suzuki
is included. The company first participated in
racing events officially in 2004. The first
three years the team was guided by Jeremiah
Jones. Kory Ellis became the team manager in the
He started racing ATVs when he was 10 years-old
and became a pro at the age of 15. He raced in
the ATVA National Series from 1995-2006 in the
ATVSource.com had the opportunity to question Ellis
about the Japanese manufacturer’s racing team.
This is what he had to say:
Kory Ellis, Suzuki's racing team manager
ATVSource: How long has Suzuki had a racing
Ellis: 2004 was the first year that the team was
official. The following season they hired
Jeremiah Jones and raced out of a semi.
ATVSource: How do you create and develop a team?
Ellis: Yoshimura and Wayne Hinson created the
team along with Suzuki. I have been very
fortunate to start working with a great team,
take over as team manager, and help the team
keep being as successful as it has been.
ATVSource: What events will the Suzuki team be
racing in for 2009?
Ellis: For the 2009 season we will only be
concentrating on defending our
championship at the AMA pro ATV motocross
ATVSource: What Suzuki ATVs will be raced?
Ellis: We will be racing the QuadRacer R450 as
we have done in the past. It was built to race
ATVSource: Why was that model chosen to race?
Ellis: Suzuki created the QuadRacer R450 (with
the help of Doug Gust) as a race-ready motocross
machine, designed to compete at the highest
ATVSource: How do you recruit your racers?
Ellis: Doug Gust was affiliated with Suzuki
before the sport Suzuki was even produced and
was instrumental in the conception of the
QuadRacer R450. After Jeremiah Jones was
injured, Suzuki looked for someone to fill his
shoes. Dustin was a young and up comer with a
lot of potential and was a perfect fit for the
ATVSource: Do you use racers in the Suzuki R&D
Ellis: Some of the changes and new updates on
the QuadRacer R450 come from feedback from
the race team. Suzuki also uses their Japan test
crew to come up with ideas as well. We all share
information that help make a better product for
the consumer. This is true for all products that
Suzuki races, just like the GSX-R sportbikes and
RM-Z motocross bikes.
ATVSource: Do racers go to events to promote
Ellis: The racers sometimes go to events to
ATVSource: Do they also visit Suzuki dealers?
Ellis: They also visit dealerships as well to
help promote an upcoming race and Suzuki.
ATVSource: Can a dealer request a racer appear
at a special event at the dealership?
ATVSource: How would a dealer request a racer
Ellis: Dealers can contact their district sales
ATVSource: Are there ATVs under development now
that will be used by the 2009 or the 2010 racing
ATVSource: What ATV features exist due to the
Ellis: In reality there are too many to list.
The QuadRacer R450 was specially designed for
ATV MX racing, and there has been a tremendous
influence from Doug Gust. Suzuki was the first
to introduce a race ready 450 sport quad in
2006. Since the inception of the QuadRacer R450,
it has proved itself on track with endless
results on the podium along with two
championships. Here are some key features on the
QuadRacer R450 that were developed in
conjunction with our ATV racing program- fuel
injection, t-shaped seat, front & rear fenders,
detachable headlight, Kashima coating on front &
rear shocks, aluminum cylinder bore is
electro-plated with Suzuki's own race proven
SCEM (Suzuki Composite Electrochemical Material)
for improved heat transfer, lightweight and
tighter piston clearance, aluminum sub frame,
steel swing arm, high-end suspension, and the
list goes on when it comes to the QuadRacer
ATVSource: Do you have a website that promotes
ATVSource: What is the website address?
ATVSource: How does a racer inquire about racing
Ellis: Do your best on the track wherever you
race, keep in touch with your Suzuki dealer, and
we will find you!