In MotoGP, Sports Marketing

They say special people make special plays on special days. So when the greatest riders of all times battle each other on the world’s most most iconic tracks, legendary moments come to life, building memories to remember for fans around the world. At the end of they day, that’s what sport is about: that immaculate, perfect moment where adrenaline meets poetry and where champions become heroes.

Business-wise, this is why you would want to choose sports marketing services for your company. You want to connect your products and your brand to such great emotions and engaging with your clients through a powerful, exciting tool.

Now, even for someone from a motorsports marketing agency it’s really hard to make a complete list for the greatest moments of MotoGP racing, let alone giving you the top 5. But here we are, nonetheless, because a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do and when you ask, we answer.

Here’s our list of our top 5 moments of MotoGP racing. Let us know in the comments or at info@rtrsports.com what you think and if something is missing.

rossi-lorenzo

Rossi Vs Stoner – Laguna Seca 2008

The breath-taking corkscrew, two of the most talented riders of all time and the two bikes that possibly have shaped the dreams of MotoGP lovers for year. That’s got to be motorcycle racing’s most iconic overtake, isn’t it? Stoner had won the previous year, bringing Ducati to world dominance but Rossi wasn’t having none of it and was well on his way to bring the title back in the Yamaha garage.

On the Californian racetrack the pair battled throughout all the race, exchanging move after move and knowing well that the 2008 crown was on the line.

Eventually, mid-race, it was Rossi making the move on the Aussie in spectacular fashion at the infamous corkscrew, tailoring a spectacular block pass at turn 7 and ending up in the sand at turn 8 before finally escaping with the lead.

Was all of it legal? Erm, no, of course not. But the move was so brave and the pass so thrilling that we’re grateful nobody said a word. One of the greatest moment not only in motorcycle racing without a shadow of a doubt in all motorsport. Back when things were simpler, more dangerous and riders actually had to pull the clutch to downshift.

Assen 2018 – The greatest race of all time?

There’s always that guy at the pub bragging about how racing isn’t what it used to be. Two-stroke engines, no electronics, same old same old. Well, if you want to win that argument, you just need two words: Assen 2018.

There’s a reason why the 2018 Dutch GP has been named “best race of all time”. Well, truth be told, there’s plenty. 26 laps of pure passion, more than 100 overtakes, six different leaders, eight riders who could come out with the win and just one man who eventually did it, Marc Marquez.

Not only this race was the best moment of a spectacular season, with several riders in their prime fighting for the crown, but it was ultimately proof of how good a work MotoGP had done creating a super competitive grid and building a clever, forward-looking set of rules.

After the checkered, people in the paddock and on the stands were exchanging high-fives and patting each other on the back. They had just seen motorsports at its most beautiful.

Rossi VS Marquez – Sepang 2015

One of the most talked-about and divisive season finales of the past 50 years, and also one of racing’s most bittersweet pages, Sepang marked the pinnacle of the Marquez – Rossi feud.

It’s the 2015 flyaway triple header and Rossi and teammate Jorge Lorenzo are battling for the title.   The pair arrive in Malaysia with a 11-point gap for the Italian, but Rossi does not like what he saw in Phillip Island the previous week and makes it clear in the pre-race press conference, saying that Marquez is toying with him and clearly rooting for the fellow spaniard. Marquez and Lorenzo laugh it off.

On Sunday it’s lights out and away they go and Pedrosa and Lorenzo zoom past the field to take the lead. Behind them, drama starts to unfold. Marquez and Rossi battle for the third place on the rostrum and cheap shots are exchanged between the two, who gesture at each other openly and are ready for a proper showdown.

With a few laps still to go, the pair miss a breaking point and go wide. Instead of keeping about his business, Valentino waits for Marquez to rejoin the track, in challenging fashion. The Spaniard isn’t having that and promptly rides alongside the Yamaha man: the two make contact and Rossi shakes Marquez off with a shove. Was it a kick? Was it a normal reaction after losing balance? No one knows.  But the relationship between the two has not been the same since.

Dovizioso VS Marquez – 2019 Austria

Maybe the biggest rivalry of the past years. Marc versus Dovi, Honda versus Ducati, the Undaunted versus the Unlimited. True, Dovizioso never won the war, but he won some good battles.

The best battle was possibly in Austria in 2019, surrounded by the gorgeous forests of Styria in a pretty damp weekend. The Spielberg track has always been a good track for Ducati, but Marc is always Marc and a Champion is always a Champion.

The pair make their intentions clear right off the bat and the Austrian GP quickly becomes a folie-à-deux type of thing. In the pounding rain Dovizioso and Marquez exchange the lead lap after lap in epic -and yet very sportsmanlike- fashion. Eventually, with just a lap to go, Marc seems to be in control of the race and the couple enters the last sector of the track. Here, Dovizioso starts painting his masterpiece. He takes a very wide line at the Rindt and, while this may seem a mistake, he’s gathering speed and momentum to go for broke at the last bend: he launches his Ducati in the gap between the apex and Marquez’s Honda, forcing the spaniard to reach for the brakes. “It’s a block pass, it’s a block pass”, the commentators scream in their mics. Indeed it is, and the Italian is able to power his bike past the finish line in first position.

Rossi VS Lorenzo – Catalunya 2009

The year is 2009. The track is the Montmelo Circuit in Catalunya, Spain. The fight between racing legend Valentino Rossi and new sensation Jorge Lorenzo knows no quarter. Off the track, the Yamaha staff had to build a wall in the garage, separating the two contenders who would not like to by spied on. On the track, well, the two produced some of the fiercest racing the crowds have ever witnessed.

Possibly, they reach their most epic at the Catalan round, where they bolt off at the start and soon are nowhere to be seen. It’s clear to everyone that we’re watching one for the ages: the TV camera stays locked on the pair and forgets about the rest of the pack lagging behind. After 20-ish laps of pure adrenaline, it’s the Spaniard who seems to have an advantage and when the last lap begins, Lorenzo gains a couple of yards and secures an important lead.  Rossi attempts a move at the end of the back straight, but Jorge is quick to shut the door at turn 10 and zooms towards the finish line. It’s over, everyone thinks, as there’s just no room to squeeze past in the tight 11-12 sequence and Lorenzo’s too good at keeping the line in the flowing bending of turn 13 and 14.

But then something happens. When the two are reaching the apex at turn 14, instead of hitting the breaks, Rossi lets go of the lever and his Yamaha dives into the corner at incredible speed. It’s genius and the Mallorcan was not expecting that. Valentino crosses the line in first, much to the delight of the Italian TV commentators whose “Rossi c’è, Rossi c’è” still echoes in the ears of every MotoGP fan.

Emanuele Venturoli
Communication Manager for RTR Sports Marketing. A degree in Communication at the University of Bologna and a passion for sport brought me where I'm today.
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