Grand Prix Motorcycle Racing in Austria
Motorcycle Grand Prix racing returned to Austria in 2016 after a break of 18 years and below are some facts and statistics related to the previous GP events in Austria.
Two years ago, Austria hosted a motorcycle Grand Prix event for the first time since 1997.
The first Austrian GP took place in 1971 at the Salzburgring circuit, which hosted Grand Prix racing for a total of 22 occasions.
At that first Austrian GP in 1971, Giacomo Agostini (MV Agusta) won the 500cc race, finishing more than a lap ahead of second-place finisher Keith Turner. Agostini also won the 350cc race, with the other classes being won by the following riders: 250cc – Silvio Grassetti (MZ), 125cc – Angel Nieto (Derbi), 50cc – Jan de Vries (Kreidler).
The last occasion that a Grand Prix event took place at the Salzburgring circuit was in 1994, when Mick Doohan won the 500cc race with a race average speed in excess of 194 km/h (120 mph).
Due to the high-speed nature of the Salzburgring circuit, and the limited amount of run-off provided, it was considered too dangerous for continued use for Grand Prix racing.
A total of 83 Grand Prix races for solo motorcycles have been held in Austria since 1971 as follows: MotoGP –2, 500cc–24, 350cc – 10, Moto2 –2, 250cc–16, Moto3 –2, 125cc–23, 80cc – 3, 50cc – 1.
The current Red Bull Ring has hosted two previous Grand Prix events prior to 2016 – in 1996 and 1997, when named the A1-Ring.
Before 2016, Valentino Rossi was the only current rider to have raced previously at this circuit in a Grand Prix event.
Rossi’s third-place finish in the 125cc race in Austria in 1996 was his first Grand Prix podium finish. He again finished on the podium in the 125cc race in Austria in 1997, this time in second place just 0.004 seconds behind Noboru Ueda.
In 2016 in Austria, Andrea Iannone won for the first time since he moved up to the MotoGP class in 2013 and gave Ducati their first win since Casey Stoner won the Australian GP in 2010. With Andrea Dovizioso crossing the line in second, this was the first one-two finish in a MotoGP race for Ducati since the Australian GP in 2007, won by Casey Stoner from Loris Capirossi.
Ducati have taken the two MotoGP wins at the Red Bull Ring since 2016 and the first of them came from pole position with Andrea Iannone. Honda won the 500cc races held at the A1-Ring in both 1996 and 1997 with Alex Crivillé and Mick Doohan.
The Austrian race in 2016 was the first time that Italian riders have taken the first two places in a premier class GP both riding Italian bikes since the Finnish 500cc GP at Imatra in 1972 won by Giacomo Agostini from teammate Alberto Pagani, both riding MV Agustas.
The average speed of the MotoGP race in Austria two years ago was 182.4 km/h. This was the highest average speed for a GP race since Mick Doohan won the 500cc German Grand Prix in 1994 at the Hockenheim circuit at an average speed of 203.8 km/h.
Last year, Cal Crutchlow finished the Austrian Grand Prix in 15th place, and crossed the line just 28.096 seconds behind race winner Andrea Dovizioso which was the closest top 15 of all-time in a full length premier class Grand Prix at that time. This record is now in sixth place on the list of the closest top 15 in the class after Assen 2018, Losail 2018, Aragón 2017, Phillip Island 2017 and Mugello 2018.
The two Moto2 races that have taken place at the Red Bull Ring have been won by two different riders: Johann Zarco (2016) and Franco Morbidelli (2017). Only one of them won from pole: Zarco.
The two Moto3 races that have taken place in Austria have been both won by Joan Mir on bikes from two different manufacturers: KTM (2016), his first Grand Prix win and from pole position, and Honda (2017).
The four Moto3 races that have taken place at the Termas de Río Hondo circuit have been won by riders now competing in the Moto2 class: Romano Fenati (2014), Danny Kent (2015), Khairul Idham Pawi (2016), who was the first Malaysian rider to win a Grand Prix race in any class, and Joan Mir (2017).
MotoGP Stats and Facts
Andrea Dovizioso won his tenth race in the premier class at the Czech GP, and his ninth for Ducati on what was his 100th Grand Prix with them. This is the 19th win in his Grand Prix career.
With his win in Brno, Andrea Dovizioso stood on the podium for the 23rd time with Ducati, equalling Loris Capirossi in second place on the list of Ducati riders with most podium finishes in the premier class. Only Casey Stoner has more podium finishes with Ducati in the class, with 42.
Andrea Dovizioso’s win at the Czech GP is his second among his 10 victories in the MotoGP class that came after qualifying on pole position, his eighth of his 19 Grand Prix wins.
Jorge Lorenzo finished in second place in Brno, which is his sixth podium finish since he joined Ducati in 2017, equalling Danilo Petrucci on the list of Ducati riders with most podium finishes.
With Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo, this is the sixth Ducati 1-2 in the premier class of Grand Prix racing.
Marc Márquez crossed the line in third place at the Czech GP, which is his fourth successive podium finish. This is a podium sequence that has happened at least once each season since he stepped up in the MotoGP in 2013.
The Red Bull Ring is one of only two circuits on the current calendar, along with Buriram joining this season, where Valentino Rossi has not had a podium finish in the premier class. Rossi has finished on the podium in the class at 26 different circuits and will be aiming to finish within the top 3 in Austria to equal the record of Mick Doohan of finishing on the podium at most different circuits in the premier class.
Yamaha riders have not won since Assen last season with Valentino Rossi (20 successive races), which is the first time Yamaha had a winless streak of at least 20 races in the MotoGP class since 2002. The last time Yamaha had a winless streak of more than 20 races was the 22-race sequence including the 15 races of 1997 and the opening 7 races of 1998.
Maverick Viñales crashed out of the race in Brno, ending a sequence of 19 successive races within points. It means that now none of the grid have scored points in all of the opening 10 MotoGP races this season.
At the Czech GP, Cal Crutchlow was the first Independent Team rider across the line for the sixth time in 2018. Johann Zarco, who is leading the Independent Team rider classification, and Danilo Petrucci, have been twice the first Independent Team riders this year.
Franco Morbidelli finished in 13th place at the Czech GP, followed by Hafizh Syahrin, his closest rival in the fight for Rookie of the Year who still leads to Rookie of Year classification with 24 points.
The only one of the five rookies in the MotoGP class this year to have previously won at the Red Bull Ring in any of the smaller classes is Franco Morbidelli, last year in Moto2. Along with Morbidelli in both 2016 and 2017, Tom Lüthi is the only other rookie to have stood on the podium at the Red Bull Ring with a third place last year.
At the Austrian GP, Takaaki Nakagami, who failed to score any points in Brno, is scheduled to make the 150th race start of his Grand Prix career.
Andrea Dovizioso moves above Phil Read
With his win at the Czech GP, Andrea Dovizioso moves above Phil Read into sixth place in the following list of riders with the longest winning careers in Grand Prix Racing:
Marc Márquez closes in on Max Biaggi
Marc Márquez’ third place in Brno was the 110th time he has stood on the podium in Grand Prix racing, just one less than Max Biaggi, who is in eighth place on the list of riders with the most podium finishes:
This was also the 151st podium finish across all classes for Jorge Lorenzo, two less than Dani Pedrosa. Only two riders have more podium finishes than Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa: Valentino Rossi (232) and Giacomo Agostini (159).
In addition, Jorge Lorenzo has finished on the second step of the podium for the 51st time of his Grand Prix career, only one less than Dani Pedrosa who is second on the list of riders with the most second-place finishes.
With his second-place finish at the Czech GP, Jorge Lorenzo moves above Dani Pedrosa into second place – and is the first rider from Spain – in the list of riders with most podium finishes in the premier class with 113. Only Valentino Rossi has more podium finishes, with 196.
Record-breaking races in all three classes at the Czech GP
On the finish line of the MotoGP race in Brno, Marc Márquez was third, 0.368 second behind Andrea Dovizioso, which is the eighth closest podium time margin of the all-time in a full length premier class Grand Prix – the third of the MotoGP era since 2002 – as shown in the following list of the ten closest podium finishes of all-time in the premier class.
In addition, Andrea Iannone crossed the line 8.326 seconds behind Andrea Dovizioso, making the closest top 10 finish in a full length premier class Grand Prix race, breaking the record from Phillip Island in 2000 with 12.582 seconds between Max Biaggi and Nobuatsu Aoki.
At the Czech GP, Simone Corsi crossed the line in the 150th Moto2 race just 10.054 seconds off the race winner Miguel Oliveira, making it the second-closest top 15 of all-time in the intermediate category and the first in a full-length Grand Prix race in the class as shown in the following list of the ten closest, all of which have occurred since the introduction of the Moto2 class in 2010.
In Moto3, Tony Arbolino finished the Czech GP in 15th place, crossing the line just 2.770 seconds behind race winner Fabio Di Giannantonio, which is the fifth closest top 15 of all-time in a full length lightweight Grand Prix as shown in the following list, eight of which have occurred since the introduction of the Moto3 class in 2012:
Valentino Rossi reached 6000 points in Grand Prix racing
With his fourth-place finish in Brno, Valentino Rossi became the first rider in the history of Grand Prix racing to reach the milestone of both 5000 and 6000 Grand Prix points, as shown in the following table of ten riders who have scored the most points in the history across all solo classes.
In addition, with his win at the Czech GP, Andrea Dovizioso moves above Loris Capirossi into fourth place of the riders with most points in Grand Prix racing and becomes the sixth rider in the history of Grand Prix racing to reach the milestone of 2000 points scored in the premier class.