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American Grand Prix history

American Grand Prix history

This weekend's Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix will be the eleventh occasion that there has been a motorcycle Grand Prix held in the USA.

This weekend's Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix will be the eleventh occasion that there has been a motorcycle Grand Prix held in the USA.

The first two events in 1964 and 1965 were held at the famous Daytona circuit; the other eight taking place at Laguna Seca. Here motogp.com runs through the highlights of the previous USA Grand Prix events:

1964 – The first US Grand Prix featured four classes as follows; 500cc – won by Mike Hailwood (MV Agusta), 250cc - Alan Shepherd (MZ), 125cc and 50cc both won by Hugh Anderson (Suzuki). In the 500cc race the crowd were treated to a fantastic battle at the front between Hailwood and Argentinean Benedicto Caldarella riding a Gilera. This was during a period when the premier-class did not have the strength in depth that it currently enjoys and when Caldarella's machine expired late in the race Hailwood ended up two laps ahead of second placed rider Phil Read on his Matchless.

The main home interest came in the 250cc race where Ron Grant (Parilla) and Bo Gehring (Bultaco) finished second and third, becoming the first American riders to finish on the podium in any class of Grand Prix racing.

1965 – Hailwood again lapped the rest of the field twice in taking the 500cc race victory at Daytona. Buddy Parriott finished second to become the first American rider to finish on the podium in the premier-class of Grand Prix racing.

1988 – Following a 22 year break, Grand Prix racing returned to the USA at Laguna Seca with races for 500cc and 250cc machines. American riders finished on the top of the podium in both races – Eddie Lawson (Yamaha) in the 500cc race and Jim Filice in 250. This was the one and only Grand Prix victory for Filice, who was riding as a replacement rider for Masahiro Shimizu on the factory Honda.

1989 – Once again American riders took the honours with Wayne Rainey (Yamaha) taking the victory in the 500cc race in front of Kevin Schwantz and Lawson. John Kocinski (Yamaha) won the 250cc race as a wild-card entry.

1990 – Rainey and Kocinski repeated their successes of the previous year and both riders went on to take the respective world titles.

1991 – Rainey won the 500cc race for the third year in succession while in the 250cc race Luca Cadalora (Honda) became the first European rider to win a Grand Prix race at the Laguna Seca circuit.

1993 – The Grand Prix returned to Laguna Seca after a year's absence. Kocinski took the first ever dry weather Grand Prix victory for Cagiva in the 500cc race. Loris Capirossi won the 250cc race and Dirk Raudies won in the 125cc class which was run for the first time at the Laguna circuit.

1994 - Cadalora (Yamaha) became the first (and so far only) non-American to win the premier-class Grand Prix at Laguna Seca. This was the last time that the event included 250cc and 125cc classes, won by Doriano Romboni and Takeshi Tsujimura respectively both riding Honda machinery. Follow the video link on the left to see the 1994 Grand Prix highlights.

2005 – After an absence of ten years the Grand Prix returned to America and the home riders dominated once again with Nicky Hayden taking his first Grand Prix victory in front of Colin Edwards. This was also the first victory in the premier-class for Honda at the Laguna Seca circuit. Follow the video link on the left to see the race highlights.

2006 – Hayden repeated his victory of the previous year on his way to becoming the first American rider to win a Grand Prix world championship on a four-stroke machine. Follow the video link on the left to see the race highlights.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, RED BULL U.S. GRAND PRIX

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