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Sunday, October 16, 2011

Honda wins 60th Constructors Championship



Honda Motor Company won a record-extending 60th Constructors Championship with the victory by Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda RC212V) in his home grand prix on Phillip Island.

The 2011 MotoGP Constructors Championship was Honda's 18th in the premier class-five in MotoGP and 13 in 500cc-to go along six 350cc titles, 19 in the 250cc class, 15 in the 125cc class, and two in the 50cc category. With Stoner's ninth victory of the season, Honda riders have won 646 races, a number that will only continue to grow.

The march into the record books began with Australian Tom Phillis winning the 1961 125cc GP in Montjuich, Spain, 50 years and one day prior to their 60th title. But it was a young Brit named Mike Hailwood, one of the many legendary riders who've successfully teamed with Honda, who gave Honda their first Constructors Championship in the 250cc class in 1961. Hailwood led a Honda sweep of the top five places in the 250cc class, securing the title for himself and Honda one race prior to Phillis's championship. Honda topped itself by winning all five solo Constructors Championships in 1966, a feat which was never matched. Honda came close in 1994, winning all three Constructors Championships.

The roster of greats who rode Hondas to victory would take up pages. A partial list of the legends who won both Constructor and Rider Championships for Honda includes Jim Redman, Mick Doohan, Max Biaggi, Eddie Lawson, Freddie Spencer, Luca Cadalora, Alex Criville, Valentino Rossi, Nicky Hayden, Dani Pedrosa, Ralph Bryans, and Daijiro Katoh. And now Casey Stoner.

Honda's current roster of world champions all contributed to the Constructors Championship. Casey Stoner had Honda's top result 10 times. Despite missing four races due to injury, Dani Pedrosa was Honda's top points-earner five times, and Andrea Dovizioso contributed one top finish. A Honda rider has finished second or first in every race this season.

Honda isn't the most successful company in the history of road racing only because of the riders. Honda is an engineering company, whose legendary and innovative machines have attracted the best in the world. Machines that are the creation of a brilliant engineering corps, which hand the bikes over to the dedicated globe-trotting race technicians, who are overseen by passionate team managers who demand, and receive, excellence. Men like Shuhei Nakamoto, the vice-president of Honda Racing Corporation, whose laser-like focus, brutal honesty, selfless dedication, and keen sense of humor were instrumental in bringing Honda the final championship of the 800cc era.

Tetsuo Suzuki, HRC President, Managing Director of Honda R&D:
"It is with great pride that I stand here on the day Honda takes its 60th Constructors Title. We have a very proud and long history since Mr. Soichiro Honda first declared to enter road racing in 1954, working hard to develop and produce the most innovative machines. It is a credit to our dedicated team who always strive to break boundaries and expand our engineering methods to create these wonderful bikes and to our talented riders with whom this feat would not have been possible. I would also like to thank all our sponsors and technical partners for their valuable support and input, it has been five years since we won our last Championship and I am honored to see that HRC is back and stronger than ever."

source: motogp official website

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