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Brno: The notable races

Brno: The notable races

This year will be the 38th occasion that a Grand Prix event will have been staged at Brno and ahead of this weekend´s action in the Czech Republic picks out a selection of highlights from previous Brno Grand Prix events.

This year will be the 38th occasion that a Grand Prix event will have been staged at Brno. The first Grand Prix to be held at Brno was back in 1965 on the old road circuit which measured 13.94 km. The circuit remained essentially the same until 1975 when it was shortened to the 10.92 km circuit that was used up until 1982, at which time it was deemed no longer up to the safety standards required for Grand Prix racing.

The current circuit was first used for a Grand Prix in 1987 and has been visited every year since with the exception of 1992. Of the current circuits only Assen has hosted more Grand Prix events than Brno. Originally the event held at Brno was the Grand Prix of Czechoslovakia until 1991, when the country was divided and the Czech Republic was formed. Below is a selection of highlights from previous Brno Grand Prix events:

1965 Three all-time greats of motorcycle racing won races that first year; nine times World Champion Mike Hailwood won the 500cc race on a MV-Agusta, six times champion Jim Redman won the 350cc race on a Honda and seven times World Champion Phil Read won the 250cc race on a Yamaha.

1966 Hailwood achieved the incredible feat of winning three Grand Prix races in one day, the 500cc, 350cc and 250cc races, all on Honda machinery. The combined race distance of these three races was 460 km which was covered in a total time of 2 hours 55 minutes and 53 seconds.

1967 A great day for British riders as they won all four races; Hailwood the 500cc and 350cc races, Read the 250cc and Bill Ivy the 125cc class. This was the last time (in a Grand Prix not subject to a boycott by top riders) that one nation has taken victory in four Grand Prix classes at a single event.

1968 Giacomo Agostini tasted success for the first time at Brno, winning both the 500cc and 350cc races on his MV Agusta factory bikes. Agostini went on to win a total of seven GP races at Brno the most successful rider on the original road circuit.

1971 Barry Sheene, in his first full season of Grand Prix racing, took the victory in the 50cc race on a Kreidler. Sheene is the only rider in Grand Prix history to win in both the 50cc and 500cc classes.

1974 - Read, riding an MV-Agusta, won the 500cc race from team mate Franco Bonera. This was the last time that four-stroke machines achieved a one-two finish in the 500cc class.

1976 British rider John Newbold became the first rider to win the 500cc race at Brno riding a two-stroke machine.

1977 Johnny Cecotto, riding a Yamaha, won the last premier-class race held on the road circuit at Brno. The circuit was subsequently considered too dangerous for the premier class machines, although the lower cylinder categories still raced there for a further five years.

1982 The last year for Grand Prix racing at the road circuit. Following this event there was a five year break before racing resumed at Brno at the newly built circuit.

1987 The first 500cc race to be held at the current Brno circuit was won by Wayne Gardner from his great rival Eddie Lawson.

1988 - Jorge Martinez won both the 125cc and 80cc races on his way to taking the world titles in both classes. This was the last ever occasion that a rider has won two Grand Prix races on the same day.

1994 Max Biaggi won the 250cc Grand Prix at Brno riding an Aprilia. The Roman Emperor went on to take three more victories in the 250cc class at the Czech GP and then added three more wins there in the premier class, making him the most successful rider at the current Brno circuit.

1996 Valentino Rossi won the 125cc GP at Brno riding an Aprilia his first ever Grand Prix win. The 500cc race ended with Alex Criville taking the win from team-mate Mick Doohan by just 0.002 secs - in one of the closest finishes of all time.

2004 Sebastian Porto won the 250cc Czech Grand Prix the 100th race victory in the 250cc class for Aprilia.

2006 Loris Capirossis MotoGP victory last year was the first at the Brno circuit for both Ducati and Bridgestone. The first 15 riders across the line were covered by just 29.296 seconds, the closest top 15 of all time in the premier class.


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