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Top 10 Greatest MotoGP Riders Of All Time14 min read

top 10 greatest motogp riders of all time

In this post, we will check out the top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

MotoGP is one of the most sought events around the world. The game has seen some of the greats and today we will talk about those greatest riders to ever play the game.

MotoGP has provided some of the biggest riders of all time. The game came into existence in 1949 and Harold Daniell is the first moto rider to win the event in 1949.

Since then we have seen some of the greats like Giacomo Agostini and Valentino Rossi’s dominate the sports over the years.

The modern greats of the game are Valentino Rossi and Marc Marquez. The two of them won a total of 13 Championships. Surely their rivalry made MotoGP a great event to watch for.

There are bold claims that they are the greatest of all time, and in many ways, this seems to be true. When you look up to both of them and their stats, nobody comes close to their records on the game.

So it’s gonna be very difficult to rank the greatest of all time when we compare the players with different generations. However, we have to combine stats and figures to rank the top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

So without a further delay let’s go ahead and check out the top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

Top 10 Greatest MotoGP Riders Of All Time

10 Casey Stoner

Image Credit- Fox Sports

Casey Stoner is a retired Australian professional motorcycle racer, and a two-time MotoGP World Champion, in 2007 and 2011.

Stone is known for his quality of driving the motorbike more forward. He is one of the top competitors to Rossi. Stoner’s first championship came for riding Ducati in 2007 and that remains Ducati’s only championship.

He continued his dominant form in 2008 and 2009 and won multiple races. However, his consistent form is not enough to challenge Valentino Rossi for the title.

During his short-lived career, he accomplished a lot and the number clearly shows his dominance in the game. He pulled up 38 wins and 69 podium finishes in a total of 115 starts.

Stoner won a second world championship title in 2011 for Repsol Honda. The championship was completely domineering with ten Grand Prix wins.

Preceding the 2012 French Grand Prix, Stoner stated that he would gonna retire from Grand Prix racing at the completion of the 2012 season. Stoner was also the champion of his home Grand Prix of Australia on six back-to-back occasions between 2007 and 2012.

Stoner’s end of the MotoGP career surely devastating however he will remain one of the best MotoGP riders of all time. He is number 10 in our list of top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

9 Kenny Roberts

Image Credit- Jeskat Agencia

Kenny Roberts is an American former professional motorcycle racer and one of the legends of the game. In 1978, he became the first American to win a Grand Prix motorcycle racing world championship.

He was also a two-time champion of the A.M.A. Grand National Championship. Roberts one of the greatest ever races are when he was head to head against his great rival Barry Sheene.

He went on to win the 1979 British Grand Prix making him the rider with back-to-back world titles. Many rated Kenny as one of the greats in motorsport racing.

Kenny transformed the sport with his incredible display of motorbike racing. He was the first rider in the history of the game to win the championship in his debut season.

He won three continuous championships from 1978-1980. Roberts had accomplished the 200 thrice and Imola 200 twice. He even perceived victory in the Laguna Seca 200 six times.

All these stats formed Robert’s career and placed him on the list of best MotoGP riders of all time. Roberts has 24 wins out of 60 races he played and had 44 podium finishes with a total point achieved is 658.

The stats clearly show how remarkable the rider was in his prime. In 2000, Roberts was designated a Grand Prix Legend by the FIM.

Robert has left a legacy that is not easy to be matched by future MotoGP riders. He is number 9 in our list of top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

8 Jorge Lorenzo

Image Credit- Fox Sports

Jorge Lorenzo is a retired Spanish professional motorcycle rider. He is a three-time MotoGP World Champion, in 2010, 2012, and 2015 as well as a two-time 250cc World Champion in 2006 and 2007.

Lorenzo entered MotoGP in 2008 with the Yamaha team. In the very first season, he proved his worth and won rookie of the year honors after finishing 4th place in the championship at Portugal.

He spent a total of 9 seasons with Yamaha which turned out to be great for Lorenzo as he won the championship on 3 occasions in 2010, 2012, and 2015 and ended as championship runner-up in 2009, 2011, and 2013.

Lorenzo prompted the Ducati factory team in 2017. He coped at Ducati in his first season seizing only 3 podiums and finished 7th in the championship in 2017. 

Lorenzo has impressive stats throughout his career. He amassed 47 Grand Prix victories and 114 podium finishes in 203 starts.

His last move to Repsol Honda in 2019 proved to be ill-fated and Lorenzo retired at the end of the season. Lorenzo is number 8 in our list of top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

7 Eddie Lawson

Image Credit- Cycle News

Eddie Lawson is a former four-time Grand Prix motorcycle racing World Champion. His tendency not crashing and consistently finishing in the points merited him the nickname “Steady Eddie”.

Lawson won three titles for the Agostini Yamaha team through a six-year stint. The highlighted year of Lawson is 1984 when he started winning regularly and won the prestigious 1984 World Championship.

In 1985, he won the prestigious Imola 200 pre-season race. After having two more successful stints with Yamaha in 1986 and 1988, Lawson shook the racing world by declaring his move to their arch-rivals, Rothmans Honda.

His move turn out to be a worthy bet as he won the 1989 title for Honda. He also became the first rider to win back-to-back championships from different manufacturers which were later repeated by the great Valentino Rossi in 2004.

When he retired from Grand Prix racing in the early 1990s, he placed third on the all-time MotoGP class (then known as 500GP) Grand Prix wins list with 31. Lawson finished his career with 31 wins and 78 podium finishes from 127 starts.

6 Mike Hailwood

Image Credit- Motor Sport Magazine

Mike Hailwood was a professional motorcycle racer and racing driver. He is considered by many as one of the greatest riders of all time.

He was a part of Grand Prix motorcycle world championships from 1958 to 1967 and in Formula One between 1963 and 1974. Hailwood was known as “Mike The Bike” because of his natural ability to ride the bike with a variety of engine dimensions.

He was a nine-time world champion and won 76 Grand Prix races throughout his motorcycle racing career, which includes 14 Isle of Man TT victories and four consecutive 500 cc world championships.

Mike was one of the few riders to be a part of the motorcycle and Formula One events. He successfully competed at Grand Prix level in both motorcycle and car racing.

Mike would have won more Grand Prix titles if he never shifted to car racing. He along with his nine-year-old daughter died in a road traffic accident in Warwickshire, England in 1981.

5 John Surtees

top 10 greatest motogp riders of all time
Image Credit- The Vintagent

John Surtees was a British Grand Prix motorcycle road racer and Formula One, driver. He was also a four-time 500 cc motorcycle World Champion. Surtees won the title in 1956, 1958, 1959, and 1960 – the Formula One World Champion in 1964.

He lives to be the only person to have won World Championships on both two and four wheels. He contended for some of the big names which include Norton and MV Augusta.

Surtees has a total of four world titles in the 500cc category and three titles in 350cc. That surely something even Surtees could be proud of. He won the Motorsport Grand Prix premiership in1956 and three back-to-back titles from 1958 to 1960.

John Surtees is surely one of the greatest MotoGP riders of all time. In 1960, he switched from motorcycles to cars making a full-time debut in Formula 1 in 1960 BRDC International Trophy at Silverstone for Team Lotus.

He proved his worth again and this time with the four-wheel. Surtees made an instant impact with a second-place finish in only his second Formula One World Championship race, at the 1960 British Grand Prix.

He established the Surtees Racing Organisation team that fought as a constructor in Formula One, Formula 2, and Formula 5000 from 1970 to 1978. 

In 1996, Surtees was drafted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame. He is number 5 in our list of top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

4 Mick Doohan

top 10 greatest motogp riders of all time
Image Credit- Bein Sports

Mick Doohan is an Australian former Grand Prix motorcycle road racing World Champion. He won five back-to-back 500 cc World Championships.

Doohan’s career persisted for eleven seasons in which he raced from 1989 till 2000, and won the championship for five straight years from 1994 to 1998.

The Australian international raced for Honda for more than 11 years from 1989. After his achievement in Grand Prix motorcycle racing, he got an opportunity to test a Formula One race car, the Williams FW19, at Circuit de Catalunya (in Spain) in April 1998.

However, he found the car unmanageable to drive and bumped against a guard rail. Doohan is also fond of bikes and a piece of great knowledge and acumen for motorcycles.

1997 was the most successful year for Doohan in which he won 12 out of 15 races, finished second in another two, and crashed out of the final race of the season at his home GP while leading by more than six seconds.

Out of 137 starts, Doohan had amassed a total of 54 wins and 95 podium finishes. He is number 4 in our list of top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

3 Marc Marquez

top 10 greatest motogp riders of all time
Image Credit- Marca

Marc Marquez is a Spanish Grand Prix solo motorcycle road racer and is regarded as one of the most thriving motorcycle racers of all time. He had a total of eight Grand Prix World Championships out of six are in the premier class.

The Spanish international entered like a hurricane in MotoGP in 2013, winning back-to-back titles. He has excelled in his own records and won four consecutive championships from 2016 to 2019.

Marquez is known as the ‘Ant of Cervera’ worldwide and ‘el tro de Cervera’ in his hometown, meaning the ‘Thunder of Cervera’. He is one of four riders to have won world championship titles in three different categories, after Mike Hailwood, Phil Read, and Valentino Rossi.

Marquez induced a new riding style and was often rated as one of the greatest innovators of modern MotoGP racing. He is also the youngest ever champion in MotoGP history.

Márquez became the first rider since Kenny Roberts in 1978 to achieve the premier class title in his first season. He is also the youngest rider to win the title overall.

He has a total of 58 wins and 98 podium finishes in 141 starts. If Marquez continues to shine he might be rated as the greatest MotoGP racer of all time. He is number 3 in our list of top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

2 Giacomo Agostini

top 10 greatest motogp riders of all time
Image Credit- CharityStars

Giacomo Agostini is a multi-time world champion Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. During his career, he accumulated a total of 122 Grand Prix wins and 15 World Championship titles.

Out of these, 68 wins and 8 titles came in the 500 cc class, the rest in the 350 cc class. He had a long career crossing to 17 years, and due to his dominance, the AMA labeled him as the greatest Grand Prix rider of all time.

His dominance on motorcycle racing is still unmatchable. He won a total of eight premier class titles and seven in the 250cc class. He also won 10 races at the Isle of Man TT.

Agostini dumped a bombshell on the Grand Prix world when he declared that he will never be part of the race at the Isle of Man TT, after the death of his close friend, Gilberto Parlotti during the 1972 TT.

He examined that the 37-mile circuit was risky for a world championship competition. However, during that time, the TT was considered one of the most prestigious races on the motorcycling calendar.

The Italian international is a great envoy of the sport and he is still doing the efforts for the benefit of Grand Prix Racing.

Agostini stunned the racing world when he proclaimed that he would leave MV Agusta to ride for Yamaha in the 1974 season. On his first drive, he prove to be a worthy bet and won the prestigious Daytona 200, the premiere American motorcycle race.

He also went on to claim the 1974 350cc World Championship. He won seven back-to-back Grand Prix titles from 1966 to 1972. With 122 career wins in 223 starts and 159 podium finishes he gives top riders a run for the money.

1 Valentino Rossi

top 10 greatest motogp riders of all time
Image Credit- Motorcycle Sports

Valentino Rossi is an Italian professional motorcycle road racer and multiple-time MotoGP World Champion. Rossi is popularly reckoned to be one of the greatest motorcycle riders of all time.

He had a total of nine Grand Prix World Championships, seven of which are in the premier class. Rossi is the only road racer in history to have competed in 400 or more Grands Prix.

He is a MotoGP winner with both Honda and Yamaha. He won the MotoGP World Championships with Factory Honda Team in 2002 and 2003 and extended his streak of back-to-back championships by attaining the 2004 and 2005 titles after leaving Honda to join Yamaha.

Valentino Rossi is surely the MotoGP GOAT and stats clearly show why he is the best of all time. Rossi’s stats are so insane that even the great Giacomo Agostini does not come close to.

He won five back-to-back titles from 2001-2005 which shows the dominance of the player at the peak of his career. Rossi completely changed the game and is surely a living legend.

He has 369 starts With 89 wins and 198 podium finishes. The records clearly make him the best than the rest. Rossi surely made MotoGP a worthwhile event to watch it.

Valentino Rossi is surely our pick for the top spot in the list of top 10 greatest MotoGP riders of all time.

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