Honda Racing World Timeline

2/26/2003 7:00:20 PM

1959
Honda racing team takes part in the Isle of Man TT Motorcycle race, placing 6th in the 125cc class.

1961
Honda racing team wins the 125cc and 250cc classes at the Isle of Man TT.

1962
Construction of the Honda-owned Suzuka Circuit in Japan is completed.

1964
Honda enters Formula One Grand Prix racing, placing 9th in the first race.

1965
Honda wins the Mexican Grand Prix with driver Richie Ginther, its first Formula One victory. Ralph Bryans wins Honda's first 500cc Grand Prix motorcycle championship.

1966
Honda wins the Constructors' Championships in all five motorcycle Grand Prix classes. Honda wins the Formula Two championship and 11 races.

1967
Honda wins the Italian Grand Prix Formula One race with driver John Surtees.

1973
Gary Jones wins Honda's first AMA 250cc Motocross title, and repeats as champion in 1974.

1981
Honda wins the 500cc Motocross World Championship for the third consecutive year.

1982
Dave Hansen wins the AMA Supercross and outdoor motocross championships. David Bailey repeats the double-title feat the following year.

1983
Honda returns to Formula One racing after a 15-year absence. American Freddy Spencer wins the 500cc Motorcycle Grand Prix title.

1984
Ralt-Honda Formula Two team wins 12 consecutive races and the championship. In Formula One, Honda wins the Dallas Grand Prix with Keke Rosberg driving. Honda-mounted Fred Merkel wins his first of three consecutive AMA Superbike titles. Johnny O'Mara wins the AMA Supercross title, the third in a row for Honda.

1985
Freddy Spencer wins both the 250cc and 500cc Motorcycle Grand Prix world championships in the same season.

1986
Williams Honda wins F1 Constructor's Championship. Honda teams finish 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th and 6th in the Paris-Dakar Rally. Ricky Johnson wins both the AMA Supercross and outdoor Motocross titles for Honda.

1987
Japanese Grand Prix is held at Suzuka Circuit for the first time. Williams Honda takes the Formula One World Championship. Wayne Gardner wins the motorcycle GP crown.

1988
McLaren Honda posts a record 11 consecutive Formula One race wins, takes both the F-1 Constructors' and Drivers' championships. American Fred Merkel wins Honda's first World Superbike Championship.

1989
McLaren Honda again wins both Formula One world titles. Merkel repeats as Superbike champion. Eddie Lawson wins the 500cc motorcycle world championship. Jeff Stanton claims the AMA Supercross championship, the first of an unprecedented eight consecutive Supercross titles for Honda riders.

1990
McLaren Honda takes its third consecutive double world championship. Jeff Stanton repeats as AMA Supercross champion.

1991
Honda posts its 60th Formula One win at the Brazilian Grand Prix, and McLaren Honda wins its fourth consecutive Grand Prix championship. Honda wins the Isle of Man TT for the 10th time. Comptech Racing and driver Parker Johnstone win the first of three consecutive IMSA Camel Lights championships.

1992
Jeff Stanton claims his third AMA Supercross title.

1993
Honda "Dream" wins the World Solar Challenge.

1994
Honda enters CART Champ Car competition. Mick Doohan wins the first of an unprecedented five consecutive motorcycle Grand Prix championships. Jeremy McGrath wins the first his four consecutive Honda-mounted AMA Supercross titles.

1995
Honda wins its first Champ Car race, the New Hampshire 200, with driver Andre Ribeiro. Miguel Duhamel wins the AMA Superbike Championship for Honda.

1996
Honda wins 11 Champ Car races, taking the CART Manufacturers' Championship and drivers' title with Jimmy Vasser. Honda wins the Solar Challenge for the second time.

1997
Honda drivers Alex Zanardi, Gil de Ferran and Jimmy Vasser finish 1-2-3 in CART competition. Honda wins the All-Japan Touring Car Championship. John Kocinski wins the World Superbike Championship for Honda.

1998
Honda wins its second CART Manufacturers' Championship and third drivers' title with Alex Zanardi. Twin Ring Motegi circuit north of Tokyo hosts Japan's first CART Champ Car race. Australian rider Mick Doohan wins his fifth consecutive 500cc Grand Prix championship.

1999
Honda wins its third CART Manufacturers' Championship in four years, and its fourth consecutive drivers' title with rookie Juan Montoya. Alex Criville becomes the first-ever Spanish 500GP Motorcycle champion for Honda's sixth consecutive title. Honda returns to Formula One competition with the new British American Racing effort.

2000
Gil de Ferran records Honda's fifth consecutive CART drivers' championship and sets a new world closed-course speed record of 241.428 mph at California Speedway. Helio Castroneves records Honda's 50th Champ Car race win at Mid-Ohio. Texan Colin Edwards wins the World Superbike Championship aboard a Honda RC-51.

2001
Honda wins its fourth CART Manufacturers' Championship, de Ferran repeats as drivers' champion. Valentino Rossi records Honda's 500th motorcycle GP race win at Twin Ring Motegi, then goes on to win his first MotoGP world championship. In Formula One, Honda adds Jordan as the company's second Grand Prix team, Jordan and BAR finish fifth and sixth in the F-1 Constructors' Championship.

2002
Honda drivers score five wins and five poles in the company's final year of CART competition. Valentino Rossi wins his second consecutive MotoGP world championship; American Colin Edwards wins his second World Superbike title and Nicky Hayden wins the AMA Superbike crown; Ricky Carmichael wins both the AMA Supercross and goes undefeated in the outdoor Motocross series.

2003
Honda begins a new era of American open-wheel racing in the IRL.