Jorge Lorenzo’s impressive win in the Japanese Grand Prix marked a significant milestone for Yamaha as the Japanese marque celebrated its 200th race victory in the premier class of the World Championship.
Having claimed his own 50th career win the previous time out at Phillip Island, Lorenzo’s Motegi success marked his 30th in the premier class as well as the 200th for Yamaha, whose first as a company in the premier class came courtesy of Britain’s Chas Mortimer in the 1973 Spanish Grand Prix at Montjuic Park, Barcelona.
Naturally, a wide range of famous names have contributed to the two centuries of race successes, including Giacomo Agostini who collected six victories for Yamaha en route to his final title in 1975. Later on, Americans made a significant input in the form of Kenny Roberts, Eddie Lawson and Wayne Rainey.
Italians Luca Cadalora and Max Biaggi added to the tally; ironically, Biaggi would often be challenged by Valentino Rossi, who would join Yamaha in 2004. No less than 49 of the most recent 50 wins have come courtesy of either Rossi or Lorenzo, with the only exception being the Dutch TT of 2011 which was won by Ben Spies.
“It’s a very special day and to be the rider to get the 200 wins is a great honour,” Lorenzo proudly stated at Twin Ring Motegi. “To win at Honda’s home race is even more special! It was a very difficult race today; they were very close but I never gave up and tried to be even faster, braking harder and opening the gap more. Finally I was able to make a little gap. We are very proud of this victory: for the result, for the circumstances and for the championship. It couldn’t be better.”
“It’s absolutely fantastic to be able to celebrate our 200th Grand Prix victory here in Japan at our home race, with such an incredible performance from Jorge Lorenzo,” added Lin Jarvis, Managing Director of Yamaha Motor Racing.
“He totally dominated, not just the weekend but also the race under extreme pressure from his rivals. I’d like to say thanks to all of the riders and teams and all of the sponsors and partners and everyone involved in bringing us these memorable victories over the years. May we go on to 201 in Valencia!”
The success marked Yamaha’s seventh win of the 2013 season.
“We can be very proud and happy to witness this incredible achievement here in Motegi,” commented Kouichi Tsuji, General Manager of Yamaha Motor Company’s Motorsport Development Division. “Jorge delivered a perfect performance to give us our 200th Grand Prix victory, continuing in the long tradition of success that we have enjoyed now since 1972. For Yamaha it is also very special to be able to enjoy this victory here in Japan for our home Grand Prix.”
The 2013 MotoGP™ season now rolls on to the Valencia season-closer on 10 November, in which Lorenzo will challenge for a third riders’ world title.