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June 18th, 2017, 05:46 AM   #1
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The most memorable race of my life

Or those races that riders regard as their most important or significant.

Let's start as we inevitably must with a concession to the Valiban.

Phakisa Freeway, Welkome, April 2004. Despite a gazillion yen being hurled at the ailing M1 project, the option of four engines and a wealth of data yielded by hapless test pilot Alex Barros, Vale line up on the grid making his marque debut on a virtually unrecognisable iteration of the Yam but very much the underdog against the proven dominance of the all conquering RC211v. On a significantly underpowered but nimble motorcycle, what unfolded was remarkable testament to superior racecraft, finnesse and guile. A remarkable head to head dual with his nemesis on the superior Honda from the drop of the flag to the finish The block pass on Biaggi followed by a masterclass in defending a line robbed him of the necessary momentum to drag past the Yam at the chequered flag. Lawson became the first rider to achieve back to back championships or different factories in a season, Vale became the first rider to record back to back victories and titles on a different make of motorcycle. Aside from that, this was Valentino's finest hour - his favourite race - and to me encapsulated everything that what great about him at the time.
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Last edited by Arrabbiata1; June 18th, 2017 at 05:49 AM.
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June 18th, 2017, 11:31 AM   #2
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No doubt, that was awesome.

Laguna 2006 Nick winning his home GP was fantastic and eventually very meaningful for the championship, even as Rossi apparently declined to actually race.

The 1991 German GP at Hockenheim was definitely memorable from a spectator point of view, though I don't recall if any protagonists considered it supremely significant. Also memorable for the oneupmanship on display in the post race interviews, classic!
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June 19th, 2017, 04:19 AM   #3
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Here's another obligatory but great example...

Crafar wins the British GP at Donington by an 11 second margin from Doohan. Riding the YZR for Peter Clifford's excellent WCM set up this was the only non-Honda win of the season and Dunlop's last victory in the premier class.

Crafar was a gentleman and a massively underrated rider who imo never quite had the machinery underneath him that his talent deserved.

It's a shame he christened his race school MotoVudu though.
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June 19th, 2017, 05:10 PM   #4
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A Local race, Canada. . This was when Suzuki went to 16" wheels, the GS550 and GS750, at least. Canadian pro Michel Mercier on a GS550 against a load of 750's. He beat them all, he was around the last corner and down the straight to claim the checker and around the first corner before second place bike got to the straight. On a 550!

Kicked their asses.

No, I don't expect anyone ever heard about it.

In conclusion, I imagine that very well might have been Michel Mercier's favourite race.
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Last edited by MadMax; June 20th, 2017 at 08:36 AM. Reason: Adding conclusion to make post on topic :)
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June 20th, 2017, 01:02 AM   #5
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One that sticks in my all time favorites is Donington 2005, I rode down from South Cumbria on my zx10r on a fairly nice morning...
On approaching the track the heavens opened, never mind full leathers and rain jacket so I plotted up to watch the race. What followed was a masterclass in riding in monsoon conditions , Rossi gapping the pack at will and crossing the line stood on the footrests playing his imaginary violin.
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June 20th, 2017, 01:52 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by danski View Post
One that sticks in my all time favorites is Donington 2005, I rode down from South Cumbria on my zx10r on a fairly nice morning...
On approaching the track the heavens opened, never mind full leathers and rain jacket so I plotted up to watch the race. What followed was a masterclass in riding in monsoon conditions , Rossi gapping the pack at will and crossing the line stood on the footrests playing his imaginary violin.
Yes, I was there too and we’ve had this discussion before – didn’t you ride back the same day? The violin was to signify the fine art of riding – a virtuoso performance. Both Jnr and Barros – both themselves wet weather specialists, couldn’t believe what they were seeing – particularly when the telemetry revealed how early he was getting on the throttle. Technically, this is probably Rossi’s greatest ride ever and the best wet weather display I’ve ever seen trackside, but I think he regards Welkom as the ride of his life. The year before that, also at Phakisa Freeway, Gibernau also rode his most memorable race marking his first victory for Gresini but more importantly in tribute to his fallen team mate upon his factory machine.


This thread is about those rides that are most memorable to the rider – not us. I remember Pedrosa referring to the duel with Lorenzo at Brno as his greatest ever ride – the GP where he adjusted the TC mid race to get more drive up horsepower hill. That was before Aragon 2015 and his triumph over Rossi which was nothing short of spectacular and has probably resulted in a personal re-evaluation.
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June 20th, 2017, 02:05 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Arrabbiata1 View Post
Crafar was a gentleman and a massively underrated rider who imo never quite had the machinery underneath him that his talent deserved.
He and McCoy in that WCM team were brilliant (IMO) with that team over-achieving based on the level of equipment available and the hurdles they experienced

FWIW. last time I looked the WCM website was till up and very informative - yep, still up - WCM - WCM Group - MotoGP Team
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June 20th, 2017, 02:15 AM   #8
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He and McCoy in that WCM team were brilliant (IMO) with that team over-achieving based on the level of equipment available and the hurdles they experienced

FWIW. last time I looked the WCM website was till up and very informative - yep, still up - WCM - WCM Group - MotoGP Team
Laconi won a GP too for WCM, in the wet at Valencia.

The later scandal over the R1 motor was infuriating.
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June 20th, 2017, 02:18 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Arrabbiata1 View Post
Laconi won a GP too for WCM, in the wet at Valencia.

The later scandal over the R1 motor was infuriating.
The fact that CRT machines come in after these guys were virtually run out of the game is a disgrace and a black mark on those involved in developing the sport at the time.

Had not forgotten Laconi to be honest but readily admit that McCoy and Crafar are favourites.

Speaking of Laconi, has he recovered well enough after that sever crash (will google)

As for the site I linked, it is a good read (IMO) and would recommend it to many of the newer supporters as a guide on machinations and what teh sport once produced in people thinking outside a box

Last edited by Gaz; June 20th, 2017 at 02:21 AM.
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July 5th, 2017, 06:27 PM   #10
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Bilpin mx track. 5 way meeting. So many riders they combined classes. Got 1st in 250 and had no idea what position i was lol. I remember there were a couple of maicos in front of me but they were open class. It was such a hard track ( more like an enduro ) that it seemed the lappers started mingling immediately after the first lap. Such fun ... but a deadly track when I think back, even had a bridge with corrugated iron siding.
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