MotoGP Classic Races
Half way through the 1993 Dutch TT you anyone would have put money on Barros to take the win, riding like a man possessed he was able to out manoeuvre both Schwantz and Doohan at will, but he wouldn’t reach the end, leaving the final corner duel to the his American team mate and the Australian returning to the scene of his horrific crash one year earlier.
The debut of Abe is a race that sticks in the mind of all MotoGP fans. Schwantz and Doohan did not know what hit them as the Japanese ace showed just how wild you can ride a Honda NSR500 when you have your hair streaming out behind you. He may not have seen the chequered flag but this race announced the birth of a new 500cc star.
Without doubt this was Wayne Rainey at the height of his speed. Doohan had emerged as the strongest challenger to the Yamaha World Champion but try as he might he could not best the American at the first race at the new Catalunya circuit as the two raced nose to tail for the duration to be separated by only 0.057 seconds at the end.
Itoh had this one sown up by mid race distance but the unpredictable conditions caught out the Japanese rider in spectacular style that left Doohan to defend from Beattie until the last lap when the World Champion pulled off one of the most amazing saves ever but lost out to Beattie who rode the conditions perfectly on his Lucky Strike Suzuki to take the win.
The last corner on the last lap was the scene of the closest finish in GP history. Doohan vs Criville, the Australian reeling from a narrow defeat in Austria one round earlier and Criville now empowered by the knowledge that Doohan was beatable made for a true classic at the picturesque Brno circuit.
In his most dominant year Mick Doohan took the title at Donington Park despite the best efforts of his closest challenger Tadayuki Okada. All Doohan had to do was score a handful of points but he took the race to Okada and eventually took the title with a fine hard fought race win.
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