Cal Crutchlow’s maiden MotoGP win at Brno just over a week ago was the first in the premier-class by a British rider for 35 years, and is certainly one for the record books! So let’s take a look through both his victory and a little more from Team GB as the paddock heads for the green green grass of the UK.
The last British rider to win a premier-class grand prix was Barry Sheene on a Yamaha, in the 500cc Swedish Grand Prix at Anderstorp on 16th August 1981. Sheene’s win in Sweden was the 300th 500 race that had taken place and was the 138th premier-class victory for British riders. Since Sheene’s win and until Brno, there had been 532 successive premier-class races without a British winner.
• At the age of 30 years 297 days, Crutchlow is the oldest rider to take his maiden win in the MotoGP class since Troy Bayliss in the classic final race of 2006, in Valencia.Crutchlow is the first British rider to win a premier-class GP race riding a Honda since Mike Hailwood won the Canadian 500 Grand Prix in 1967.
• The win at Brno was also the 10th MotoGP podium for Crutchlow, which is the greatest number of premier-class podium finishes for any British rider since Barry Sheene.
• Crutchlow is just the sixth rider to win a MotoGP race having never competed full-time in any of the smaller classes of grand prix racing. He is in the good company of Nicky Hayden, Makoto Tamada, Troy Bayliss, Chris Vermeulen and Ben Spies – making Crutchlow the only European to achieve the feat.
• Crutchlow is the 17th rider to win in both the premier-class of grand prix racing and in the Superbike World Championship.
In addition to Cal Crutchlow’s historic win in the MotoGP race, it was a great day for British riders at the Czech GP all round with a number of long standing records re-written:
• John McPhee won for the first time in the Moto3 class in what was his 76th grand prix start, which was also the first grand prix win for the Peugeot badged Mahindra machine.
• McPhee was the first British rider to win a grand prix at Brno since John Newbold won the 500 race around the old Brno road circuit in 1976.
• The Czech GP was only the second time since 1977 that two British riders have won solo grand prix races on the same day – the other occasion was at Austin last year, when Sam Lowes won in Moto2 and Danny Kent in Moto3.
• Brno was the first time since 1976 that two British riders have taken their maiden grand prix victory in the same season.
• British riders have now won a race in each of the three classes this year. The last time that British riders won at least one race in the equivalent of the three current classes in the same season was 1973, when Phil Read won four times in the 500 class, Charlie Williams won in the 250 class and both Chas Mortimer and Tommy Robb won one race each in the 125 class.
• With Sam Lowes finishing third in the Moto2 race in Brno it was only the second time since 1978 that Team GB had at least one podium finisher in all three classes on the same day – the other instance was in Argentina last year.
• 2016 marks the first time since 1976 that Britain have had three different grand prix winners in a single season.
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