Minichamps MIN122903002 1990 Yamaha YZR500 (OW45) GP Motorcycle - Wayne Rainey, World Champion (1:12 Scale)
"As a racer you always have that at the back of your mind. That you always wonder when's it gonna happen. Cause it will happen, you know you will fall off."
- Wayne Rainey
The YZR500 was the Yamaha Motor Corporation's entry for 500cc Grand Prix motorcycle racing between the years of 1973 and 2002. Riders who rode it to world championships are Giacomo Agostini (1975), Kenny Roberts (1978, 1979, 1980), Eddie Lawson (1984, 1986, 1988) and Wayne Rainey (1990, 1991, 1992).
Born on October 23rd, 1960, in Downey, California, Wayne Rainey, is an American former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, he won the 500cc World Championship three times and the Daytona 200 once. He was characterized by his smooth, calculating riding style.
He began his career racing in the American Grand National Championship, a series that encompassed four distinct dirt track disciplines plus road races. Following his success in the Novice 250cc road race class, Kawasaki hired him to compete in the 1982 AMA Superbike Championship as a teammate to the then defending National Champion, Eddie Lawson. The following year, Lawson moved to the Grand Prix circuit and Rainey took over the role of leading rider, earning the 1983 National Championship for Kawasaki.
In 1984, he accepted an offer to ride for the newly formed Kenny Roberts Yamaha squad in the 250cc class of the Grand Prix World Championship. A less than successful season saw him returning home to join the American Honda Superbike team from 1985 to 1987. It was during the 1987 Superbike National Championship that his intense rivalry began with Kevin Schwantz as the two battled it out for the title. Rainey won the Championship, but the fierce rivalry between the two competitors was just beginning. So intense was their rivalry that they continued their battle during the 1987 Trans-Atlantic Match Races in which they were supposedly teammates competing against a team of British riders.
Pictured here is a 1:12 scale replica of a 1990 Yamaha YZR500 (OW45) GP Motorcycle driven by world champion, Wayne Rainey. Comes packaged in a handsome presentation case. Sold Out!
Length: 7 inches
Height: 3.50 inches
Release Date: February 2013
Historical Account: "Return Engagement" - In 1988, Wayne Rainey returned to Europe, again joining Team Roberts Yamaha, this time in the premier 500cc division riding the YZR500. His arch-rival Schwantz followed him to Europe, signing to race the 500cc class for Team Suzuki. The two would continue their rivalry on race tracks all across Europe, driving each other to higher levels of competitiveness. In 1988, Rainey and his Team Roberts Yamaha teammate Kevin Magee would also win the prestigious Suzuka 8 Hours endurance race in Japan. In the 1989 campaign, Rainey would finish second overall.
From 1990 to 1992, Rainey hit his stride earning three consecutive 500cc crowns for Yamaha. Rainey was well on his way to his fourth-consecutive title in 1993. He was leading the championship points and leading the GP when he suffered his career-ending crash at the Italian Grand Prix in Misano, in which he slid into the gravel trap at high speed, breaking his spine against the raked surface designed as a safety feature for car racing. The injury handed the title over to his great rival, Kevin Schwantz. Rainey's injuries would render him permanently paralyzed from the chest down.