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October 31st, 2018, 05:27 AM   #11
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I have to disagree about Mike Hailwood. I always held John Surtees in much greater esteem.

Hailwood was what I would call a "playboy". He followed the world circuit when it was really nothing more than a pastime for those who could not get a real job. Sponsorship was not what it is now, back then. And even then didnt his dad fund him? The worlds best riders were not on the world circuit then. I remember him coming over to race a local race here, and being thoroughly outshone. Ago came out here and did way better than Hailwood.

Bit surprised nobody mentions Surtees .... he had class. And skill. And he was a racer.
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Last edited by BarryMachine; October 31st, 2018 at 05:29 AM.
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October 31st, 2018, 10:10 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Deefer Dogg View Post
Up to the bit about Mike the Bike, I agree 100%.

I don't necessarily disagree about Hailwood. Just never witnessed him myself. I think it's difficult to compare times you have witnessed to those you haven't.
That's why an "all time" greatest is near impossible to decide. Makes for good discussion though.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0LnNP7mw7XY

Take a look at that, Mallory Park 1978, the fastest bikes then were Kawas and Hailwood was on a Ducati which was slower than even the Honda's just shows how good he was and not a kneeslider to be seen.
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October 31st, 2018, 10:11 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by BarryMachine View Post
I have to disagree about Mike Hailwood. I always held John Surtees in much greater esteem.

Hailwood was what I would call a "playboy". He followed the world circuit when it was really nothing more than a pastime for those who could not get a real job. Sponsorship was not what it is now, back then. And even then didnt his dad fund him? The worlds best riders were not on the world circuit then. I remember him coming over to race a local race here, and being thoroughly outshone. Ago came out here and did way better than Hailwood.

Bit surprised nobody mentions Surtees .... he had class. And skill. And he was a racer.
He was world champion on 2 and 4 wheels.
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October 31st, 2018, 11:06 AM   #14
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What does GOAT mean? Define that, and I'll be able to answer.
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October 31st, 2018, 01:18 PM   #15
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I meet up with an old fella every year at the TT and he's adamant that the best rider there has ever been is Jarno Saarinen, though unfortunately due to his premature death he never won what his talent could achieve.
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October 31st, 2018, 01:40 PM   #16
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What does GOAT mean? Define that, and I'll be able to answer.
Isn't it a given what GOAT means i.e. Greatest (motorbike rider) of all time? Anymore limitations than that and you will exclude periods, series, type of bikes, etc. I think the only limiting factor in this conversation is that it ought to be on street bikes.

Personally I don't think it is possible to assess this. If you take limited 'chunks' of time like decades or start of new advanced technologies (4 stroke vs 2 stoke, TC vs no-TC, etc.) than there is more of a likelihood to come to a consensus and to a correct one at that.
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October 31st, 2018, 02:01 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by AntG View Post
I meet up with an old fella every year at the TT and he's adamant that the best rider there has ever been is Jarno Saarinen, though unfortunately due to his premature death he never won what his talent could achieve.
Was going to mention Saarinen but just have not seen enough and was hoping actually that J4 would pop into the thread as he has discussed Saarinen at length a few times.
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October 31st, 2018, 02:06 PM   #18
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Isn't it a given what GOAT means i.e. Greatest (motorbike rider) of all time? Anymore limitations than that and you will exclude periods, series, type of bikes, etc. I think the only limiting factor in this conversation is that it ought to be on street bikes.

Personally I don't think it is possible to assess this. If you take limited 'chunks' of time like decades or start of new advanced technologies (4 stroke vs 2 stoke, TC vs no-TC, etc.) than there is more of a likelihood to come to a consensus and to a correct one at that.
I also think it's really hard to assess because it means different things to different people.

What is greatness though? Championships? Championships on different bikes? Championships in different classes? Championships over a long period of time? Championships against high caliber opposition? Wins? Premier class wins? Outright speed? Who would win the championship against all his rivals for GOAT? If so, on what bike (2T 500? 4T 990? 4T 800? What tyres? etc.)
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October 31st, 2018, 02:14 PM   #19
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I also think it's really hard to assess because it means different things to different people.

What is greatness though? Championships? Championships on different bikes? Championships in different classes? Championships over a long period of time? Championships against high caliber opposition? Wins? Premier class wins? Outright speed? Who would win the championship against all his rivals for GOAT? If so, on what bike (2T 500? 4T 990? 4T 800? What tyres? etc.)
As I said, GOAT means different things to different people as afterall, greatness is in the eye of the beholder (although after a race that could well be beer holder) which all means that really, whilst we may disagree with some people that person cannot really be wrong as it is afterall, their opinion.

I rate some riders far higher than their stats would show (I seriously rate McCoy for example) and then we have others with good stats who, whilst good riders may not be in discussions for other reasons.

My thoughts only.
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October 31st, 2018, 07:09 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by AntG View Post
I meet up with an old fella every year at the TT and he's adamant that the best rider there has ever been is Jarno Saarinen, though unfortunately due to his premature death he never won what his talent could achieve.
I can see why he thinks that Sarinnen hit and was a breath of fresh air. Complete with a new style. He actually looked like he knew what he was doing on the bike. He was the Stoner of his time.
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