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Wildcards present Japan with only quarter-litre success in 2002

Wildcards present Japan with only quarter-litre success in 2002

Wildcards present Japan with only quarter-litre success in 2002

The three podiums achieved by Japanese riders in the 2002 250cc World Championship were all recorded by wildcards, with Grand Prix regulars Naoki Matsudo and Haruchika Aoki unable to achieve in a whole season what their compatriots managed in one race. Whilst Osamu Miyazaki took victory in the opening round at Suzuka from Daisaku Sakai and Yuki Takahasi took third at Motegi, neither Matsudo or Aoki were able to finish higher than seventh.

Matsudo finished higher up in the overall classification as he took tenth place in the final standings, whilst Aoki ended up back in fourteenth. This represents a disappointing end to a run of Japanese riders in the top three which has lasted since 1997. Tetsuya Harada finished third in 1997 and 1998, whilst Tohru Ukawa was second one year later. Shinya Nakano also finished runner-up in 2000, whilst Daijiro Kato and Harada took the top two spots in 2001.

Tags:
250cc, 2002

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