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2008 SV650S
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The Ben Spies time was strange to say the least. Won 3 titles in AMA Superbike, went to WSBK and easily won the title, went to MotoGP and it all fell apart. Did pretty good for a couple seasons (even won a race), but then started crashing and getting hurt. Some weird failures too. Swing arm broke at Laguna (swing arm on a factory MotoGP bike just broke??) Brakes over 1000 degrees in the first 2-3 laps of another race? Crashes and injuries to follow, then getting shunted off to the career ending capital of the time, Ducati..
Don't like to be a conspiracy theorist, but watching it all at the time, got the feeling that Ben was never really wanted in MotoGP. Yamaha went with him, but when he got too close to the front, the end was placed..
Ben Spies reminded me a lot of Colin Edwards. Very similar dominance in other motorcycle racing organizations, just to bomb it in MotoGP. Nicky Hayden was the only one from recent memory that won a title without being a groomed MotoGP rider. And his title was an odd one too (I’ll never forget when he was torpedoed by Pedrosa on the penultimate race), he won maybe 3 races that season?


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199 Posts
My son was about 7 or 8 that season and was fully vested in Nicky's triumph. When Dani made that bonehead move we booed and cursed. Since that time, we use "pedrosa" as a verb to "undermine": "Don't pedrosa my move to the studio apartment" is something he said just a couple of weeks ago, as I was trying to talk him out of a bad move.
That move was the beginning of me seriously disliking him. HRC then made him their number one rider for the 2007 season even though Hayden gave them the title the previous season. The whole thing was set up for Pedrosa, even the switch to 800cc machines which made them friendlier to transition from 250cc. And none of that worked for him. He just wasn’t as good as expected. Casey Stoner flew under the radar in 2006, then in 2007 he made a serious presence on a satellite Honda. And well the rest is history. Pedrosa won zero titles while being in a factory Honda for his whole career, and Casey retired at the top of his career winning in whatever he was given. I wish he stayed for a few more seasons and see if he could put a dent on Marquez dominance.
2006 when Nick won the title (with 2 race wins) it was closely fought, with him only beating Rossi by 5 points. The highlight of the last race that year at Valencia was Troy Bayliss wildcarding on the Ducati in his only MotoGP race, and winning it in style.
Yeah it was just two wins. He was consistent, and that’s all what was needed that season. Troy Bayliss was a beast.


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Pecco is on fire and Fabio is fading. This should be an easy win for Pecco. I say he wins this by over 30 points. Rins was on fire, but he’s just not consistent. Maybe he deserves a seat at Repsol, but he must now prove his worth on LCR Honda come next season.

And can’t write off MM93. He’s slowly but surely building his confidence back. He’ll be a front runner in 2023.

But besides Suzuki getting out of the paddock, the biggest loser here is Yamaha. Their bike is shit, and it’s amazing how Fabio kept that bike winning when it clearly isn’t working for anyone else. Maybe Maverick was onto something when he gave up his factory seat willingly.


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Well you weren't far off, 17 points in it but yes, Pecco took it. Pretty intense first lap with some paint swapped and aerodynamic wings knocked off but what an awesome ride by Rins. Nailed the start and lead the whole race. Great to see Suzuki bow out in style after a fairly bleak season.
Disappointing to see Miller crash out in the final laps hey but he wasn't going to make the podium after Binder came through on the charge. A very impressive ride by Binder, showed true pace and his tyres went the distance.

So that's it till 26th of March next year in Portugal when it all kicks off again. It's been another great season of viewing.
Yeah it was a great race and Pecco showed lots of restraint by racing very conservatively in order to just bring the bike home. Rins ran a perfect race, it’s great to see Suzuki retire with a win. Not the first time Suzuki bows out. The first time they were struggling too much with the 4 stroke change, so it made sense. This time they had a very competitive bike and talented riders. They even scored a title since KRjr. We can only hope to see them back in the future. Would love to see green bikes again too.

I’ve been following MotoGP since the early 90’s, and I have never seen so much talent on that grid at one time. Half that grid is a potential front runner. Gone are the days of one guy running away with it year after year. Also everyone has so much mutual respect. None of the silly feuds from back then. I think this is a true golden era for the sport.


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There's four guys on the grid now who are proven Championship winners (one multiple). For the first time in a while, the race is down to the bike itself. Everybody chasing Ducati. Aprilia looks to be the closest to competing at the moment, see what Honda pulls out of the bag for the spring tests. KTM keep lurking in the shadows, plus now they have the GasGas Aspar team for a test bed (still waiting to see if they're going to be a concessions team). Yamaha is on the rocks big time. They're down to two bikes on the grid, and in the state that they are now, if they loose Quartararo they're immediately going to the back of the pack. And loosing FQ20 is a very real possibility. If they don't come up with something in '23, I figure he'll opt out of the second year of the contract and jump ship to somewhere else.
And as for feuds.. Oh yeah, there's a big one brewing. Two young and very ambitious Italians on the same team, you can bet on bare knuckles there in '23..
Yeah Bestia and Pecco on the same team will spark some great competition in the Ducati garage. But will it be as crazy and intense as Rossi and Biaggi? Rossi and Gibernau?


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