The Watercraft Journal: Brian, thanks for spending a few minutes with us; for those of our readers who aren’t familiar with your racing career, please tell us how you got started.
Brian Baldwin: Watersports have been a huge part of my life since I was born. I grew up on Lake James in Marion, North Carolina. My family bought jet skis around 1986 and I have been hooked ever since. I got a lot of my inspiration watching Scott “Hollywood” Watkins, Larry “The Ripper” Rippenkroger, Victor Sheldon, Harry Goacher,Chris “Flyin’ Fish” Fischetti and Jeff Jacobs. They helped instil a serious passion for the sport in me and racing is basically all I have wanted to do since. My first race was in Daytona in 1999 and I won all rounds of my class. I went on to win the next three rounds and took the overall in my first regional series. The winning continues today with two Pro World Titles and national Pro National Championships.
WCJ: This year, you were one of the big wave of racers who left Sea-Doo for Yamaha. What comparisons between the SVHO-powered FZR and the RXP-X helped you make the switch?
BB: The Yamaha FZR SVHO is the total package. The FZR has screaming horsepower combined with awesome handling making much more rider and racer-friendly. The power coming from the 1.8 liter engine – capable of speeds over 80mph with very few modifications – is insane. After being introduced to the FZR and taking it for as spin, I felt like it was the ski for me. The potential that the Yamaha showed along with the amazing support offered by Yamaha Factory Racing made switching to Yamaha an easy choice for me. I am thankful to have finally had the opportunity to be a part of a totally supportive, forward-moving manufacturer and team like Yamaha Factory Racing!

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