Alex Crivillé 15 years of title in 500 cc
Time passes very quickly and is now 15 years since a day like today Crivillé Alex became the first and only Spanish 500cc champion. A title in the premier class that have folded after Jorge Lorenzo and Marc Márquez, although less radical enrolled in MotoGP.
A sixth place in the Brazilian Grand Prix in Rio Janeiro was enough to make futile victory in that race to Kenny Roberts Jr., runner-up at the end of the year. After a real dictatorship of Mick Doohan in the previous five seasons with Honda a serious crash in training Australian GP in Jerez Spain in the third race of the year opened the range to the rest. In fact it ended the career of Australian. ‘Crivi’ had hitherto best finish runner-up in 1996, beating Doohan sometimes counted.
But picked up the baton in HRC Honda brilliantly, with six wins (Jerez, Paul Ricard, Mugello, Catalunya, Donington and Imola) and two second places (Sachsenring and Brno) in the next 9 races finally built their title.
Inside your box was the toughest opponent ‘Taddy’ Okada, third at last overall in a structure that was also an emerging Sete Gibernau. That year he also won races Roberts Jr. with Suzuki (4), Okada (3), Max Biaggi with a discrete Yamaha, Regis Laconi and Norifumi Abe. After fading in the first GP of Valencia Crivillé no longer be the same again, but rents collected hitherto served to secure a well-deserved title despite getting just one podium in the last five races.
These problems are further reproduced in his title defense in 2000, which could only win in France and had many dropouts. This would result in his premature retirement in 2002 at 32, but was finally able to overcome this condition and can always say it is the only Spanish he won in 500 cc. What would have happened if you had not been injured Doohan? It is something we will not know that gold is also history and in Spanish motorcycling. He was the first to have real success in the premier class and will be remembered well.