When you think of the ultimate adventure bike, your first thoughts probably lean more towards bikes like the class-leading BMW R1200GS. If we continue that thought, and said that the ultimate ADV machine was in fact a Yamaha, you would of course then expect to see the subsequent words to center around the Yamaha Super Ténéré (read our review of the Yamaha Super Ténéré here).

Well, someone in Yamaha’s French office is our flavor of crazy, as they let six-time Dakar Rally winner Stephane Peterhansel loose in the sand dunes of Merzouga, Morocco on a Yamaha YZF-R1. Shod with exquisitely hand-cut Michelin tires, Peterhansel flexes the 180bhp machine over the dunes with proper rallying style.

Truly gorgeous shots, if it is available in your area, you’ll want to pick up the latest copy of L’Intégral magazine to see them in the gloss and read Peterhansel’s thoughts on riding the R1 in its non-native habitat.

Source: Yamaha France; Photos: François Rophé & Alain Lecorre / L’Intégral

  • Stunning photos, it’s incredible that he was able to belt this bike around the dunes, I wouldn’t have thought it had the ground clearance!

  • the man from T.A.N.T.E.

    As far as ground clearance….looks like the last photo tells that tale….buried it…..Good Stuff.

  • Sjaak Lucassen thought this was a good idea a while back :-)


  • Afletra

    I just saw a video of Special Edition R1 (like in this pics) using spiky wheels doing some race with car in the snow field, I’m still stunned…then I see this pics, just wow!

  • MikeD

    Loving it. Just because IS SO WRONG IT MAKES IT RIGHT. HAAA! …..screw the Adventure Bikes…your SuperBike will do just fine.(^_^)

  • Steve Lang

    This is HILARIOUS!

  • Westward

    Video !!!

    Pictures are great, but where is the video..?

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  • FeelgoodInc

    If you get excited about these photos you will possitively poop yourself in awe at the stuff Nick Sanders has been getting up to for years on his trust R1s!!

    Can I put a link up? Is that poor form? Hmm…googly woogly.

  • FeelgoodInc

    I mean no disrespect to Peterhansel btw, the man is a legend. Just thought I’d mention Nick as he is a wee bit bonkers by all accounts.

  • Sean in Oz

    Ive never gone as far as playing in the dunes, but my friends and I regularly take our sports bikes on dirt, sand and gravel roads to get to less travelled tar roads … and even do the occasional creek crossing.

    Ive seen photos somewhere of a guy doing a motocross race on a SV650/1000 trackbike including doing some jumps.

  • Russ

    nice bike with running gear for that terrain – my adventure is going to be the stony desert (birdsville track Australia) what running gear for the “marble like” stones in that place?

  • singletrack

    Great stuff, as long as it’s someone else’s bike.

  • MikeD

    Westward says: March 26, 2012 at 12:12 AM

    Video !!!

    Pictures are great, but where is the video..?


  • Junkie

    Sean in Oz: that was Dan Sewell and it was a supermoto race on an SV650 superbike. He removed the lower after realizing he’d break it otherwise, he had planned on keeping it on before that. Flatslide carbs and NO AIR FILTERS on it too.

  • Sean in Oz, Dan finished 2 spots behind me in that race it was cool to see it in person, couldn’t jump for shit tho

  • Grant Madden

    Scrambled in an old shingle pit on my GSX1100 some years ago.Its a lot of fun.Everyone should have a go with a big roadie in the dirt,broadslides just happen!!

  • luke

    wow. just wow.

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