Suzuka 8 Hour Results

Suzuka 8 Hours History

While the 5.821km Suzuka circuit itself was opened in the September of 1962, the Suzuka 8 Hour first came about in 1978.

It quickly became the most important race for production based bikes in the world.

American duo Wes Cooley and Mike Baldwin won that inaugural duel on July 30, 1978, on a Yoshimura backed GS1000 Suzuki.

Australia planted its flag at Suzuka in 1979 when a Team Honda Australia squad consisting of Tony Hatton and Mick Cole rode a CB900 to victory.

New Zealand took their first top step on the rostrum the following year when Kiwi Graeme Crosby partnered with American Wes Cooley to win the race on a Yoshimura GS1000 Suzuki.

While the race was a Japanese affair largely contested between Nippon manufacturers, it was not untiul 1982 that Japanese riders themselves tasted the champagne. That year the race was reduced to six hours due to an incoming typhoon and standing atop the podium were Shigeo Iijima and Shinji Hagiwara.

Honda RVF Suzuka Hours
1985 Suzuka 8 Hour winning RVF750

Wayne Gardner won the first of his quartet of Suzuka 8 Hour victories in 1985 while sharing the riding duties on the RVF750 Honda with Masaki Tokuno.  Gardner went on to win again the next year, 1986, while partnered with Dominique Sarron.

1987 was the first time Yamaha took top honours and it came thanks to the talents of Kevin Magee, who became the fourth Australian to win a Suzuka 8 Hour. Magee won in partnership with German Martin Wimmer in 1987, the following year, 1988, the Horsham Hurricane’s victory was taken in conjunction with a then 28-year-old Wayne Rainey. The American also won his first 500cc GP race victory that year.

Wayne Gardner and Mick Doohan won in 1991 on an RVF750 Honda.

Daryl Beattie then shared the victory podium with Gardner in 1992 on the Oki Honda Racing Team RVF750.

New Zealand’s Aaron Slight then won three on the trot with a different partner each time. The first victory in 1993 coming on a Kawasaki with Scott Russell, followed by two wins on the RC45, the first with Doug Polen and the second with Tadayuki Okada.

1993 also signalled the change from F1 or TT style motorcycles as the premier category at the Suzuka 8 Hour to ‘Superbikes’.

Colin Edwards and Noriyuki Haga put Yamaha back on top in 1996 before Honda then went on a ten-year winning streak that stretched all the way from 1997 through to 2006.

SuzukaH Rossi Edwards
Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards won the 2001 Suzuka 8 Hour

The first three of that decade long Honda winning streak were won on RC45s, the next four on VTR-SP twins, including Valentino Rossi’s 2001 victory with Colin Edwards on the Cabin Honda VTR-SP1, while the Fireblade took top honours in 2004/05/06.

SuzukaH Takeshi Tsujimura
2006 – Suzuka 8 Hour – Takeshi Tsujimura

Yukio Kagayama and Kousuke Akiyoshi broke Suzuki’s 24-year drought in 2007.

SuzukaH Kagayama
Yukio Kagayama – 2007 Suzuka 8 Hour

Carlos Checa and Ryuichi Kiyonari put the Fireblade back on top in 2008.

SuzukaH Checa Kiyonari
Carlos Checa and Ryuichi Kiyonari – Suzuka 8 Hour – 2008

2009 saw the introduction of three-rider teams and another all-Japanese victory for Yoshimura Suzuki.

2012 Suzuka 8 Hour
2012 Suzuka 8 Hour winners Kousuke Akiyoshi, Tadayuki Okada and Jonathan Rea

2010 saw Honda’s Fireblade kicked off another winning streak that carried right through to 2014.

2013 Suzuka 8 Hour
2013 Suzuka 8 Hour winners Takumi Takahashi, Michael Van der Mark and Leon Haslam

Winners for Honda in this period included Leon Haslam, Takumi Takahashi, Jonathan Rea, Takaaki Nakagami, Tadayuki Okada and Michael Van der Mark.

2015 marked a new era of domination by the Yamaha Factory Racing Team and the YZF-R1M.

Katsuyuki Nakasuga
Katsuyuki Nakasuga – Suzuka 8 Hour – 2015

Japanese hotshot Katsuyuki Nakasuga has been part of all those victories while Pol Espargaro (2015/16) helped him to two, as did Alex Lowes (2016/17), while Bradley Smith (2015) and Michael Van der Mark (2017) played their parts in Yamaha’s recent string of success also.

Katsuyuki Nakasuga and Pol Espargaro
Katsuyuki Nakasuga and Pol Espargaro – 2015 Suzuka 8 Hour

This year, 2018, Nakasuga is again partnered with Alex Lowes and Michael Van der Mark.

Katsuyuki Nakasuga, Alex Lowes and Michael Van der Mark
Katsuyuki Nakasuga, Alex Lowes and Michael Van der Mark victorious at the 2017 Suzuka 8 Hour

If the Yamaha trio win the race again in 2018, two of them, Nakasuga and Van der Mark, will both join a very exclusive club. Both riders already have three Suzuka 8 Hour victories to their name, Nakasuga with Yamaha over the past three events, while Van der Mark won two with Honda (2013-2014) while last year was his first with Yamaha.


Suzuka 8 Hour Most Successful Riders

Only Wayne Gardner (1985-1986-1991-1992), Ryuichi Kiyonari (2005-2008-2010-2011) and Shinichi Itoh (1997-1998-2006-2011) have taken four victories at the prestigious race.

The most successful rider at the Suzuka 8 Hour is Tohru Ukawa. The Japanese rider has five victories to his name (1997-1998-2000-2004-2005). All five were won on Honda machinery, two on the RC45, one on the VTR1000 and two more on Fireblades.

Suzuka Ukawa
2004 Suzuka 8 Hour – Tohru Ukawa

Suzuka 8 Hour Most Successful Manufacturers

Honda are the leading manufacturer with 27 wins. Next best is Yamaha with seven victories while Suzuki have five wins.

SuzukaH Kiyonari
Ryuichi Kiyonari – 2008 Suzuka 8 Hour

Kawasaki has only ever won the prestigious event once and that was some 25 years ago when Aaron Slight and Scott Russell piloted a ZXR750R to victory.


Suzuka 8 Hour Results

Roll of Honour


Winners from 1978 to present
Year Winner Machine Riders
1978 Yoshimura Racing Group Suzuki GS1000 united states Wes Cooley
united states Mike Baldwin
1979 Team Honda Australia Honda CB900 australia Tony Hatton
australia Michael Cole
1980 Yoshimura R&D Suzuki GS1000 united states Wes Cooley
new zealand Graeme Crosby
1981 Honda France Honda RS1000 united states Mike Baldwin
united states David Aldana
1982 Blue Helmets MSC Honda CB900F japan Shigeo Iijima
japan Shinji Hagiwara
1983 Suzuki France Suzuki GS1000R france Herve Moineau
belgium Richard Hubin
1984 America Honda Honda RS750R united states Fred Merkel
united states Mike Baldwin
1985 Team HRC Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
japan Masaki Tokuno
1986 Team HRC Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
france Dominique Sarron
1987 Shiseido TECH21 RT Yamaha YFZ750 germany Martin Wimmer
australia Kevin Magee
1988 LUCKY STRIKE Roberts Yamaha YFZ750 australia Kevin Magee
united states Wayne Rainey
1989 BEAMS Honda Ikuzawa Honda RVF750 france Dominique Sarron
france Alex Vieira
1990 Shiseido TECH21 RT Yamaha YFZ750 japan Tadahiko Taira
united states Eddie Lawson
1991 Team HRC Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
australia Mick Doohan
1992 OKI Honda RT Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
australia Daryl Beattie
1993 ITOH HAM Racing Kawasaki Kawasaki ZX-7RR united states Scott Russell
new zealand  Aaron Slight
1994 Team HRC Honda RVF/RC45 united states Doug Polen
new zealand Aaron Slight
1995 Team HRC Honda RVF/RC45 new zealand Aaron Slight
japan Tadayuki Okada
1996 Y.R.T. Yamaha YFZ750 united states Colin Edwards
japan Noriyuki Haga
1997 HORI-PRO Honda with HART Honda RC45 japan Shinichi Itoh
japan Tohru Ukawa
1998 LUCKY STRIKE Honda Honda RVF/RC45 japan Shinichi Itoh
japan  Tohru Ukawa
1999 LUCKY STRIKE Honda Honda RVF/RC45 japan Tadayuki Okada
brazil Alex Barros
2000 Team CABIN Honda Honda VTR1000SP japan Tohru Ukawa
japan Daijiro Kato
2001 Team CABIN Honda Honda VTR1000SP italy Valentino Rossi
united states Colin Edwards
2002 Team CABIN Honda Honda VTR1000SP japan Daijiro Kato
united states Colin Edwards
2003 Team Sakurai Honda Honda VTR1000SP japan Yukio Nukumi
japan Manabu Kamada
2004 Seven Stars Honda 7 Honda CBR1000RR japan Tohru Ukawa
japan Hitoyasu Izutsu
2005 Seven Stars Honda 7 Honda CBR1000RR japan Ryuichi Kiyonari
japan Tohru Ukawa
2006 F.C.C. TSR ZIP-FM Racing Honda CBR1000RR japan Takeishi Tsujimura
japan Shinichi Itoh
2007 Yoshimura Suzuki, JOMO 34 Suzuki GSX-R1000 japan Yukio Kagayama
japan Kousuke Akiyoshi
2008 Dream Honda Racing Team 11 Honda CBR1000RR japan Ryuichi Kiyonari
spain Carlos Checa
2009 Onwards
Year Team Machne Riders
2009 Yoshimura Suzuki with JOMO Suzuki GSX-R1000 japan D Sakai
japan K Tokudome
japan  N Aoki
2010 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO. Honda CBR1000RR japan R Kiyonari
japan T Nakagami
japan T Takahashi
2011 F.C.C. TSR Honda Honda CBR1000RR japan K Akiyoshi
japan S Itoh
japan R Kiyonari
2012 F.C.C. TSR Honda Honda CBR1000RR united kingdom J Rea
japan K Akiyoshi
japan T Okada
2013 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO. Honda CBR1000RR japan T Takahashi
united kingdom L Haslam
netherlands M vd Mark
2014 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO. Honda CBR1000RR japan T Takahashi
united kingdom L Haslam
netherlands M vd Mark
2015 Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha YZF-R1 japan K Nakasuga
spain P Espargaro
united kingdom B Smith
2016 Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha YZF-R1 japan K Nakasuga
spain P Espargaro
united kingdom A Lowes
2017 Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha YZF-R1 japan K Nakasuga
united kingdom A Lowes
netherlands M vd Mark
Winners from 1978 to present
Year Winner Machine Riders
1978 Yoshimura Racing Group Suzuki GS1000 united states Wes Cooley
united states Mike Baldwin
1979 Team Honda Australia Honda CB900 australia Tony Hatton
australia Michael Cole
1980 Yoshimura R&D Suzuki GS1000 united states Wes Cooley
new zealand Graeme Crosby
1981 Honda France Honda RS1000 united states Mike Baldwin
united states David Aldana
1982 Blue Helmets MSC Honda CB900F japan Shigeo Iijima
japan Shinji Hagiwara
1983 Suzuki France Suzuki GS1000R france Herve Moineau
belgium Richard Hubin
1984 America Honda Honda RS750R united states Fred Merkel
united states Mike Baldwin
1985 Team HRC Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
japan Masaki Tokuno
1986 Team HRC Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
france Dominique Sarron
1987 Shiseido TECH21 RT Yamaha YFZ750 germany Martin Wimmer
australia Kevin Magee
1988 LUCKY STRIKE Roberts Yamaha YFZ750 australia Kevin Magee
united states Wayne Rainey
1989 BEAMS Honda Ikuzawa Honda RVF750 france Dominique Sarron
france Alex Vieira
1990 Shiseido TECH21 RT Yamaha YFZ750 japan Tadahiko Taira
united states Eddie Lawson
1991 Team HRC Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
australia Mick Doohan
1992 OKI Honda RT Honda RVF750 australia Wayne Gardner
australia Daryl Beattie
1993 ITOH HAM Racing Kawasaki Kawasaki ZX-7RR united states Scott Russell
new zealand  Aaron Slight
1994 Team HRC Honda RVF/RC45 united states Doug Polen
new zealand Aaron Slight
1995 Team HRC Honda RVF/RC45 new zealand Aaron Slight
japan Tadayuki Okada
1996 Y.R.T. Yamaha YFZ750 united states Colin Edwards
japan Noriyuki Haga
1997 HORI-PRO Honda with HART Honda RC45 japan Shinichi Itoh
japan Tohru Ukawa
1998 LUCKY STRIKE Honda Honda RVF/RC45 japan Shinichi Itoh
japan  Tohru Ukawa
1999 LUCKY STRIKE Honda Honda RVF/RC45 japan Tadayuki Okada
brazil Alex Barros
2000 Team CABIN Honda Honda VTR1000SP japan Tohru Ukawa
japan Daijiro Kato
2001 Team CABIN Honda Honda VTR1000SP italy Valentino Rossi
united states Colin Edwards
2002 Team CABIN Honda Honda VTR1000SP japan Daijiro Kato
united states Colin Edwards
2003 Team Sakurai Honda Honda VTR1000SP japan Yukio Nukumi
japan Manabu Kamada
2004 Seven Stars Honda 7 Honda CBR1000RR japan Tohru Ukawa
japan Hitoyasu Izutsu
2005 Seven Stars Honda 7 Honda CBR1000RR japan Ryuichi Kiyonari
japan Tohru Ukawa
2006 F.C.C. TSR ZIP-FM Racing Honda CBR1000RR japan Takeishi Tsujimura
japan Shinichi Itoh
2007 Yoshimura Suzuki, JOMO 34 Suzuki GSX-R1000 japan Yukio Kagayama
japan Kousuke Akiyoshi
2008 Dream Honda Racing Team 11 Honda CBR1000RR japan Ryuichi Kiyonari
spain Carlos Checa
2009 Onwards
Year Team Machne Riders
2009 Yoshimura Suzuki with JOMO Suzuki GSX-R1000 japan D Sakai
japan K Tokudome
japan  N Aoki
2010 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO. Honda CBR1000RR japan R Kiyonari
japan T Nakagami
japan T Takahashi
2011 F.C.C. TSR Honda Honda CBR1000RR japan K Akiyoshi
japan S Itoh
japan R Kiyonari
2012 F.C.C. TSR Honda Honda CBR1000RR united kingdom J Rea
japan K Akiyoshi
japan T Okada
2013 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO. Honda CBR1000RR japan T Takahashi
united kingdom L Haslam
netherlands M vd Mark
2014 MuSASHi RT HARC-PRO. Honda CBR1000RR japan T Takahashi
united kingdom L Haslam
netherlands M vd Mark
2015 Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha YZF-R1 japan K Nakasuga
spain P Espargaro
united kingdom B Smith
2016 Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha YZF-R1 japan Ki akasuga
spain P Espargaro
united kingdom A Lowes
2017 Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha YZF-R1 japan K Nakasuga
united kingdom A Lowes
netherlands M vd Mark

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