News 1 Mar 2017

CDR Yamaha's Long to wear SHIFT for 2017 season

Surprise gear deal revealed at MX Nationals media launch.

Image: MXN.

CDR Yamaha’s Dylan Long became the latest professional rider worldwide to sport the all-new SHIFT MX 3LUE Label gear set at Wonthaggi’s official 2017 Motul MX Nationals series launch on Monday.

In a surprise reveal, the popular MX1 rider joined an elite list of racers selected to represent the product with Team Honda HRC’s Ken Roczen and Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Gautier Paulin also wearing the 3LUE Label line.

Initially expected to be a FOX athlete alongside CDR Yamaha teammate Dean Ferris, the youthful Victorian jumped at the rare opportunity to wear the cutting-edge SHIFT offering in a first for the factory Yamaha premier class squad.

“I was going to be wearing FOX, but then this deal came across and it was a special deal,” Long told “It’s myself, Ken Roczen and Gautier Paulin who are the main SHIFT MX riders who get to run the new 3LUE Label stuff at this stage, so it’s a really cool deal and a really cool opportunity so we went with it.

“It’s really cool and it’s super-light. I could go from that gear back to the older style gear and feel like I’ve put on weight between motos [laughs]. It’s sick, because you don’t really even feel like you’re wearing gear and it looks great too.”

Alongside Long’s move to the 3LUE Label gear sets, Ferris will also make the switch from Alpinestars to FOX boots for the 2017, a first for the CDR Yamaha squad after a long-standing relationship with the Italian boot manufacturer.

It was a short showing for Long in his all-new outfit as the 2017 series launch event marked just his second ride back from a wrist injury sustained late last year.

“I rode probably three 15-minute sessions at one of my local tracks and that was my first ride back, the wrist was pretty sore and it wasn’t really that great to ride with,” Long explained. “I took Sunday off to let it rest and then we went there on Monday and Dacky [Craig Dack] just wanted me to do the corner a few times and get some photos.

“He didn’t want to send me out on a rough sandy track with my wrist the way it is. I’m a racer, I want to go as fast as I can and if I was out there with all of those boys I’d want to be going fast.”

It will be a case of easing back into things over the coming weeks as the factory Yamaha newcomer begins his shortened 2017 Motul MX Nationals preparation process.

“From now on I can ride, I just have to ease into it because it’s a pretty crappy injury – it’s been horrible,” he added. “When I do ride it just aches, but I can still ride alright, there’s no problem with that. It’s just going to take me I’d say another two weeks or so to be feeling good on the bike, but it’s better late than never.”

Long is confirmed to make his official racing debut with the CDR Yamaha squad in the 3LUE Label offering on 2 April at Wonthaggi in Victoria for round one of the 2017 Australian motocross calendar.