Loris Capirossi - 2006 Rider Profile
2006 Rider Profiles
Born: 4 April 1973 in Castel San Pietro (Italy)
Marital Status: Married to Ingrid
Height: 1.65 m / 5'5"
Weight: 59 kg / 130 lbs
Hobbies: Motocross, cars
Career Stats;2006: MotoGP World Championship (Ducati Desmosedici)
2005: 6th - MotoGP World Championship (Ducati Desmosedici)
2004: 9th - MotoGP World Championship (Ducati Desmosedici)
2003: 4th - MotoGP World Championship (Ducati Desmosedici)
2002: 8th - MotoGP World Championship (Honda)
2001: 3rd - 500 World Championship (Honda)
2000: 7th - 500 World Championship (Honda)
1999: 3rd - 250 World Championship (Honda)
1998: 1st - 250 World Championship (Aprilia)
1997: 6th - 250 World Championship (Aprilia)
1996: 10th - 500 World Championship (Yamaha)
1995: 6th - 500 World Championship (Honda)
1994: 3rd - 250 World Championship (Honda)
1993: 2nd - 250 World Championship (Honda)
1992: 12th - 250 World Championship (Honda)
1991: 1st - 125 World Championship (Honda)
1990: 1st - 125 World Championship (Honda)
1989: 4th 125 European Championship (Honda)
1988: 9th 125 European Championship (Mancini)
1987: 6th First roadrace - 125 Italian Production Championship (Honda)
1986: First motocross events
Like most modern-day racers, Capirossi commenced his love affair with motorcycles at a very early age. Born just a couple of hours' drive from Ducati's home city Bologna, he started riding a friend's dirt bike when he was five, quickly learning the art of throttle control, so vital with today's extraordinarily powerful race machines. But it was roadracing that really interested him and he contested his first tarmac season at the age of 14, riding a Honda NS125 road bike to sixth in the Italian Production Championship. A year later he was ninth in the 125 Italian Championship aboard a Mancini, and in 1989 he showed real promise aboard a Honda in the 125 Euro series. He took fourth overall, winning four rounds as he readied himself for promotion to the World Championship scene.
Capirossi's first world crown was a truly remarkable accomplishment. Aged just 16 at the start of the 1990 season, he made his GP debut as number two rider to team-mate and ex-World Champion Fausto Gresini, now a successful MotoGP team manager. He approached the season as an apprenticeship and yet showed no fear for the experienced opposition, scoring his first podium at Misano in May, his first win at Donington Park in August and securing the title with a hard-fought third victory in the Australian season finale. With the number one plate on his Honda RS125 in 1991, Capirossi was the man everyone wanted to beat, but he admirably shrugged off the pressure, winning a further five victories for his second title.
For 1992 Capirossi graduated to 250s. His Honda RS250 production bike wasn't as rapid as the factory machines ridden by many of his rivals, but it proved a perfect introduction to the ultra-competitive class. Once again Capirossi proved a quick learner, up with the leaders in only the third GP of the year. For 1993 he was equipped with full-factory NSR250s and immediately fulfilled the previous season's promise. He won his first 250 GP at Assen and took two more victories to lead the series into the final race, when an incorrect tyre choice lost him the crown. Capirossi could have been forgiven a tantrum following his misfortune but was as dignified in defeat as he is in victory. His 1994 season began with wins in Austria, Germany, France and Britain but he succumbed to Max Biaggi's super-fast Aprilia later in the campaign, finishing third overall.
Some experts questioned the diminutive star's decision to quit 250s and join the premier 500 class with Team Pileri Honda in 1995. But the ever-determined youngster proved them wrong by qualifying on the front row at only his second 500 GP. He scored four more front-row starts but struggled with machine set-up over race distance. Nevertheless, he crowned the season with a thrilling third-place finish at Catalunya.
Capirossi changed teams for the first time in 1996, joining Yamaha Team Rainey. This was an up-and-down year, brightened by his first 500 GP victory at Eastern Creek, Australia, but in the long term he benefited hugely from the wisdom of team boss Wayne Rainey, a former three-time 500 king. For 1997 Capirossi accepted an offer from Aprilia to return to the 250 class - he had unfinished business there. This first season with the Italian manufacturer brought no wins, but he got to grips with the V-twins the following summer, taking the crown following a controversial last-race collision with team-mate and title-rival Tetsuya Harada. In 1999 he returned to NSR250 power, ending up third overall.
Capirossi changed classes once more in 2000, returning to the premier class with Sito Pons' Honda team. He won the Italian GP and finished on the podium a further three times. As ever, he showed remarkable courage in the face of injury - after scoring his first 500 pole at the Dutch GP he fell in morning warm-up, breaking his left hand. And yet he raced, with the aid of painkillers, to a remarkable third-place finish. Capirossi put together a more consistent 2001, taking his year-old Honda to podium finishes in nine races. In 2002 he was once again on year-old machinery, riding an out-classed 500cc two-stroke against the new breed of 990cc four-strokes.
In 2003 Capirossi was given the envious task of spearheading Ducati's first premier-class effort in more than three decades. He had a remarkable year on the all-new V4 that shocked the established Japanese teams with its astonishing speed. During June he beat champ Valentino Rossi to take a hugely emotional victory at Catalunya after earlier scoring the bike's first pole position at Jerez. He achieved a total of five podium finishes and three poles to end the year fourth.
The 2004 season proved to be more difficult, Capirossi focusing on bike development before returning to the limelight in 2005. He took podium finishes in Italy and the Czech Republic, back-to-back wins in the Japanese and Malaysian GPs and a hat trick of poles, thanks to crucial machine improvements and Ducati's new association with Japanese tyre maker Bridgestone. He may even have finished the year second overall but for a big crash during practice for the Australian GP.