MotoGP (Grand Prix) racing hisitory at Laguna Seca
The first two Grand Prix events to be held in the USA were at Daytona in 1964 and 1965. Following these two events there was a 22-year gap before Grand Prix racing returned to America – at the Laguna Seca circuit in 1988.
This will be the eleventh time that a Grand Prix racing has taken place at the Laguna Seca circuit and below is a brief summary of the previous ten events:
1988 – This included races for the 500cc and 250cc classes with American riders finishing on the top of the
podium in both races – Eddie Lawson (Yamaha) in the 500cc race and Jim Filice in the 250cc race riding as a
replacement for Masahiro Shimizu on the factory Honda.
1989 – Once again American riders took the honours with Wayne Rainey (Yamaha) taking the victory in the
500cc race in front of Kevin Schwantz (Suzuki) and Eddie Lawson (Honda). John Kocinski (Yamaha) won the
250cc race as a wild-card entry.
1990 – Both Wayne Rainey and John Kocinski repeated their success of the previous year; both riders went on
to take the respective world titles.
1991 – Wayne Rainey won the 500cc race for the third year in succession while in the 250cc race Luca Cadalora
(Honda) became the first European rider to win a Grand Prix race at the Laguna Seca circuit.
1993 – The Grand Prix returned to Laguna Seca after a year’s absence. John Kocinski took the fi rst ever dry
weather Grand Prix victory for Cagiva in the 500cc race. Loris Capirossi (Honda) won the 250cc race and Dirk
Raudies (Honda) won in the 125cc class which was run for the fi rst time at the Laguna circuit.
1994 – Luca Cadalora (Yamaha) became the fi rst non-American to win the premier-class Grand Prix at Laguna
Seca. This was the last time that the event included 250cc and 125cc classes, won by Doriano Romboni and
Takeshi Tsujimura respectively both riding Honda machinery.
2005 – After an absence of ten years the Grand Prix returned to the US and the home riders dominated once
again with Nicky Hayden taking his first Grand Prix victory in front of Colin Edwards. This was also the first
victory in the premier-class for Honda at the Laguna Seca circuit.
2006 – Nicky Hayden repeated his victory of the previous year on his way to becoming the first American rider
to win a Grand Prix world championship on a four-stroke machine.
2007 – The event was dominated by Casey Stoner who started from pole and led the race from start to finish.
This was the first GP victory for both Ducati and Bridgestone tyres at the Laguna Seca circuit. Chris Vermeulen
finished second – the first podium finish for the Suzuki four-stroke MotoGP machine at Laguna Seca.
2008 – Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) won for the first time in the USA and made it three different winning manufacturers in three successive years.