Thrills, big-name spills and unexpected battles. The 2019 Pramac Generac Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix was another race to remember at Phillip Island as Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) and Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) went head-to-head for victory. But how did this race compare to some other Island classics?
2004: Valentino Rossi vs Sete Gibernau
Two great rivals went toe-to-toe at Phillip Island in 2004 as Gibernau aimed to slightly spoil Rossi and Yamaha’s title celebrations. The duo was 10 seconds clear of the field, but in the end – after a sensational final lap scrap - it was ‘The Doctor’ who celebrated his fourth premier class title with a win. Just 0.097 splitting them at the line.
2005: Rossi beats Nicky Hayden
The Italian and the late, great American were embroiled in an intense battle for most of the race, but the Yamaha man just had the edge on his Honda rival to claim his fifth-straight Australian GP victory.
2015: Championship tensions arise
A four-rider scrap for Phillip Island supremacy in 2015 unfolded, and it was a pivotal race for the Championship. Repsol Honda’s Marquez took on Yamaha title rivals Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo, with Ducati’s Andrea Iannone mixing it with the trio in an incredibly intense race.
2017: Marquez vs the Yamahas
Two years later, Repsol Honda’s Marquez had to fend off a triple threat from Yamaha. Rossi, Viñales and Johann Zarco – in the end – didn’t quite have enough to beat the number 93 on that day as the top four finished within two seconds of each other.
2019: a Marquez, Viñales classic
This year’s battle was right up there with the best. Marquez and Viñales were in another league on race day, while an unbelievable three-manufacturer fight unravelled behind.