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On this day in 1971: Findlay takes first two-stroke victory

On this day in 1971: Findlay takes first two-stroke victory

On this day in 1971: Findlay takes first two-stroke victory

Today marks 33 years since Jack Findlay made history in the MotoGP World Championship as the first man ever to win a 500cc race on a two-stroke motorcycle.

Findlay's victory at the Ulster GP on the 14th August 1971, riding a Suzuki 500 built by himself and Danielle Fontana, was the first of victory of a 28 year career which saw the Australian race well into his 40s, establishing a reputation as one of the best privateer riders in the history of the sport.

Findlay, who had twice captured the unofficial title of best privateer in the 500cc class in 1966 and 1968, was a keen devotee to the Isle of Man - a race he went on to win in 1972, riding a water-cooled TR500 for Suzuki Italia.

In 1974 he realised his ambition of a works contract riding for Suzuki but was released the following season at the age of 39. After turning to a TZ750 Yamaha, the veteran beat upcoming youngster Barry Sheene to win the 1975 FIM Formula 750 championship before returning to 500cc Grand Prix, taking his final victory in 1977 at Salzburgring ahead of just five other riders in a race which was boycotted by the works teams.

Later that month a serious accident effectively ended Findlay's career, although he did return the following season and finished one more Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2004

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