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20 days ago
By motogp.com

Classics: Relive three of the best Japanese GPs

Ahead of the Motul Grand Prix of Japan, take a look back through the best of the land of the rising sun…

Tags MotoGP, 2016

1994 – The Japanese GP was the third of the season and reigning champion Kevin Schwantz was ready to shine at Suzuka again – one of his signature tracks. For his part, Mick Doohan had recovered his best form after his terrible accident in 1992 and began the season ready to fight for the title once again. However, neither of the 500 legends could imagine what would happen after lights out.

To the surprise of everyone, unknown local rider Norifumi Abe would also fight for the victory – but could a wildcard really take on two of the biggest names in the world?

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1994 Japanese GP 500cc Highlights

2010 – Motegi saw the arrival of the final part of the season in 2010, and the title fight between Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa was almost over in favour of the former as a crash for Pedrosa saw the older Spaniard sit out the race. Lorenzo had to make the most of it, taking it to the limit against his nemesis and man on the other side of the garage – Valentino Rossi.

The Italian, although conscious of Lorenzo’s situation, didn’t make it easy for his teammate – and neither did Casey Stoner or Andrea Dovizioso. Sparks most definitely flew…

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Motegi 2010 - MotoGP - Race - Full session

2015 – Motegi once again, and the title fight in the balance at Round 15. The fight for the championship between Yamaha teammates Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi was already at boiling point, separated by only 14 points after MotorLand Aragon saw Lorenzo dominate from start to finish and Rossi beaten to P2 after a spectacular duel with Dani Pedrosa. Every point was worth a fight.

Race day saw rain hit the Twin Ring Motegi, and it was initially Lorenzo who bolted from the line with some stunning wet weather pace – but the best laid plans often go awry as wet lines run dry, and the Championship took another twist in Japan…

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#JapaneseGP: MotoGP™ Full Race