Repsol Honda - History

History

In 1995 the team entered a 3 rider lineup with Mick Doohan, Àlex Crivillé and Shinichi Itoh riding the Honda NSR500. Mick Doohan won the World Championship for the second time in a row in Argentina, with one race left for the end of the season with seven race wins, Àlex Crivillé finished the season fourth with 1 race win while Shinichi Itoh finished fifth overall.

The team expanded to four riders in 1996 with Mick Doohan and Àlex Crivillé riding the Honda NSR500 and Tadayuki Okada and Shinichi Itoh riding the Honda NSR500V. Mick Doohan won his third World Championship with 8 race wins and Àlex Crivillé finished runner-up with two wins. Tadayuki Okada finished seventh and Shinichi Itoh twelfth.

The four rider line-up continued in 1997 with Michael Doohan, Àlex Crivillé and Tadayuki Okada on the Honda NSR500 and Takuma Aoki on the Honda NSR500V. Repsol Honda won all 15 races of the season with Mick Doohan winning 12 races, and breaking Giacomo Agostini's record for victories in one season, on his way to his fourth World Championship. Tadayuki Okada finished runner-up with a race win. Àlex Crivillé finished fourth with 2 wins but had to miss five races after a serious crash in Assen. Takuma Aoki finished fifth overall. Repsol Honda riders took all of the podium positions at four events, Japan, Spain, Germany and Indonesia.

For 1998 Michael Doohan, Àlex Crivillé and Tadayuki Okada continued with the team riding the Honda NSR500 and Sete Gibernau joined them riding the Honda NSR500V. Michael Doohan continued to dominate the championship with 8 wins and was crowned World Champion for the fifth time in Australia, in front of his home fans and with one race left in the season. Àlex Crivillé finished third overall with 2 wins Tadayuki Okada had to miss three races after breaking his wrist during practice of the Italian Grand Prix and finished eighth overall. Sete Gibernau, finished eleventh.

The team line-up remained the same for 1999 with Michael Doohan, Àlex Crivillé and Tadayuki Okada continued with the team riding the Honda NSR500 and Sete Gibernau riding the Honda NSR500V. During qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix, five-times World Champion Michael Doohan had a serious crash and was forced to miss the rest of the season and to finally announce his retirement as a rider. Àlex Crivillé went on to win six races and clinch the World Championship in Brazil with one race left in the season. Tadayuki Okada finished third overall with three race wins. Sete Gibernau, who was given the Honda NSR500 after Doohan's injury, finished fifth overall. The team managed an all Repsol Honda riders podium at Catalunya with Crivillé first, Okada second and Sete Gibernau third.

Àlex Crivillé Tadayuki Okada and Sete Gibernau remained with the team for 2000 all on Honda NSR500 motorcycles. 2000 was a difficult year for the Repsol Honda Team. Àlex Crivillé only got one win and finished ninth overall.Tadayuki Okada finished eleventh and Sete Gibernau fifteenth.

In 2001 Àlex Crivillé was joined by Tohru Ukawa. The season was not much better than 2000. Àlex Crivillé could only manage 2 podiums and finished the season eighth. Tohru Ukawa finished tenth with a single podium finish.

In 2002, the debut year of the new MotoGP class, Valentino Rossi joined the team alongside Tohru Ukawa riding the new Honda RC211V, the only two riders to use the new motorcycle until near the end of the season when Alex Barros and Daijiro Kato were also given the RC211V. Valentino Rossi dominated the season and with eleven race wins become World Champion with four races left for the end of the season. Tohru Ukawa with one victory and eight podium finishes, finished third overall.

2002 AMA Superbike Champion Nicky Hayden joined Valentino Rossi in 2003.Valentino Rossi with nine wins and finishing on the podium at all the races, became World Champion for the third time in a row with two races left in the season. Nicky Hayden finished fifth overall with two podium finishes.

Following Valentino Rossi's departure, Grand Prix veteran Alex Barros joined Nicky Hayden in 2004. Alex Barros finished the season fourth and Nicky Hayden fifth. Both riders got podium finishes but no race wins.

For 2005 Max Biaggi joined Nicky Hayden as the team's line-up. Nicky Hayden got his first MotoGP win in his home race, the United States Grand Prix, he finished third overall. Max Biaggi was fifth with four podiums.

For 2006, Nicky Hayden was joined by 250cc World Champion Dani Pedrosa. Nicky Hayden led the championship for most of the season but at the Portuguese Grand Prix, teammate Dani Pedrosa recklessly crashed into him. Both riders were out of the race and Valentino Rossi took the championship lead with one race left to go. In the last race of the season, Rossi fell off his motorcycle on lap 5 trying to make up for a poor start. Hayden had a conservative race finishing a safe 3rd and thus became World Champion. He got 2 race wins and eight other podium finishes. Dani Pedrosa finished fifth with two race wins and 5 other podium finishes.

The same line-up remained for 2007. The team used the new 800cc Honda RC212V. The new motorcycle did not have the expected success right away but later in the season the motorycle was improved. Dani Pedrosa got 2 race wins and finished the season runner up. Nicky Hayden could only manage podium finishes and finished the season eighth overall.

For 2008, Dani Pedrosa and Nicky Hayden made up the rider line-up, with Mike Leitner and Pete Benson as Pedrosa and Hayden's chief mechanics, respectively, and Kazuhiko Yamano as team manager. During the season Pedrosa switched to Bridgestone tires and a wall was placed between the garages of Pedrosa and Hayden to prevent observation of tire data. A wall between the same team's garages was first instituted by Rossi at the beginning of the season between himself and his teammate on Michelins, Jorge Lorenzo.

For 2009, Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso are the team riders.

For 2010, the HRC Team Director is Kazuhiko Yamano, overseeing all operations including the factory teams and satellite teams. Toshiyuki Yamaji replaces Yamano as Team Manager and will direct the entire Repsol Honda team. Alberto Puig is the Pedrosa Team Manager and Gianni Berti is the Dovizioso Team Manager. Shinichi Kokubu is the Grand Prix Technical Director, overseeing the six RC212V machines in MotoGP.

For 2011, Shuhei Nakamoto is HRC Vice President and directs all MotoGP teams. Shinichi Kokubu is Technical Director, and Livio Suppo is HRC Communication and Marketing Director. Dani Pedrosa, Andrea Dovizioso, Casey Stoner are the team riders.

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