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Top 5 Moments of MotoGP 2016!

Top 5 Moments of MotoGP 2016!

In a season of nine different race winners, picking the best moment is no easy task...
1. Maverick Vinales wins for Suzuki

In a season of nine different race winners, picking the best moment is no easy task.

We eventually opted for Maverick Vinales at Silverstone, simply because it was both his first win and the first for Suzuki since 2007.

But even that 2007 win was by rain master Chris Vermeulen at a soaking Le Mans and a fairer comparison was the last time a Suzuki had won in the dry; not since the 500cc era in 2000, with Kenny Roberts Jr.

Vinales' victory also proved that, with the right rider and team, a manufacturer could enter/return to MotoGP and achieve success in only its second season.

2. Crutchlow ends the UK's 35-year wait

Cal Crutchlow was one of four riders to win a MotoGP race for Honda this season and one of two satellite riders, alongside good friend Jack Miller.

But Crutchlow's victory success - at Brno and then Phillip Island - was still unique for several reasons.

The Czech win was the first for a rider from the UK since Barry Sheene way back in 1981, while the Australian triumph was the first in the dry for a non-factory rider since Toni Elias in 2006.

That's significant because many believe the MotoGP technical rules (which for 2016 included a single ECU) could not be considered 'balanced' until a satellite rider had returned to the top step in a 'normal' dry race.

3.Rossi wins in Catalunya  
The Catalunya round was thrown into sadness when Luis Salom lost his life during Friday practice for the Moto2 class.

The rest of the weekend effectively became a tribute to the young Spaniard and it was thus fitting that Sunday's MotoGP main event saw a thrilling battle between Valentino Rossi and Marc Marquez.

Two of the sport's biggest stars hadn't fought in such close quarters since the infamous Sepang 2015 encounter. But this time the racing was clean, with Rossi eventually claiming victory.

The pair then symbolically buried the hatched as they shook hands for the first time since October 2015.

After the tragic events of Friday, it was just what MotoGP needed.

4. Iannone returns Ducati to the top

Even rival manufacturers are quick to admit that more brands winning in MotoGP is good for the sport as a whole.

As such, few begrudged Ducati its first race win since 2010 during August's return to the Red Bull Ring in Austria.

Ducati had been through some very tough time following the departure of Casey Stoner, most notably the failure to win with Valentino Rossi, and has made wholesale changes in recent seasons.

Now by Gigi Dall'Igna, Ducati had missed it's victory target in 2015, but was able to celebrate twice in 2016 - Andrea Dovizioso, runner-up to Iannone in Austria, later winning the wet Malaysian round.

5. Marquez's save at Assen

2016 was a pivotal season for Marc Marquez, who proved he was mentally strong enough to put last year's controversy behind him and return to the top of the world championship - despite riding a bike with obvious deficiencies, at least at the start of the season.

But for us, the moment that summed up Marquez's extraordinary talent - and cat-like reactions - was when he saved this massive front-end lock-up during free practice at Assen.