MotoGP - the premier class of Grand Prix Motorcycle racing is the pinnacle of two-wheeled racing, and succeeding at this level is a daunting task with many managing to secure only a couple of wins in their entire career.
A few, however, defied all the odds, managing to claim race wins right at the start of their MotoGP career, setting standards the next generation of MotoGP riders. Moreover, few of these young race winners even went on to win the MotoGP championship on multiple occasions.
Without further ado, let us look closer at the six youngest MotoGP race winners.
Note: This list does not include wins for classes other than the premier class. The premier class constitutes the current MotoGP class and the now defunct 500cc class.
#6 Jorge Lorenzo - 20 years, 345 days
Jorge Lorenzo claimed his first MotoGP win barely a month before he turned 21. The Spaniard found success at the 2008 Portuguese Grand Prix. Riding for the Yamaha Factory Team, Lorenzo took the pole position in qualifying and cruised to a famous victory at the Autodromo do Estoril, finishing over 1.8 seconds ahead of Dani Pedrosa.
Jorge Lorenzo finished the 2008 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season in the fourth place with 190 points.
#5 Randy Mamola - 20 years, 239 days
Randy Mamola’s first MotoGP victory came during the 1980 Belgian Grand Prix, which was held, for the first time, at the Circuit Zolder. Riding a Suzuki machine, the American rider took the top step of the podium by having a comfortable lead of over twelve seconds over the second-placed Marco Lucchinelli.
With one more race win that season, Randy Mamola finished the year in the second place with 72 points, 15 points behind the champion Kenny Roberts.
#4 Dani Pedrosa - 20 years, 227 days
Dani Pedrosa, one of the greatest riders to never win a MotoGP championship, secured his first MotoGP win at the Shanghai International Circuit in 2006. The fourth race of the 2006 Championship saw the Spanish rider take the pole position, set the fastest lap and claim the first win.
Riding the Repsol Honda machine, Pedrosa took the top step of the podium while his teammate Nicky Hayden secured the second spot.
Dani Pedrosa finished the season in the fifth place with 215 points.
#3 Norifume Abe - 20 years, 227 days
The third round of the 1996 MotoGP season saw Norifume Abe secure a famous win at his home Grand Prix in Japan. Norifume Abe took the first place at the Suzuka Circuit with a comfortable margin as the second-placed Alex Criville could only manage to secure the second place after trailing the leader by over six seconds.
Along with that race win, Abe went on to claim three more podiums that season to secure the fifth spot in the riders’ championship table.
#2 Freddie Spencer - 20 years, 196 days
Freddie Spencer secured the top stop on the podium at the 1982 Belgian Grand Prix while riding for Honda HRC. The American rider, who managed to claim a podium in the first race of the season, went one better in the seventh race of the season by securing a famous victory at the Spa-Francorchamps circuit.
Great Britain’s Barry Sheene finished second, some four seconds behind Spencer.
Freddie Spencer finished the 1982 Grand Prix motorcycle racing season in the third place.
#1 Marc Marquez - 20 years, 63 days
Marc Marquez takes the first spot on our list by claiming a race win in his very first MotoGP season. The prolific Spanish rider managed to secure this historic feat in just his second race in the premier class.
At the Circuit of the Americas, Marc Marquez started the race from pole position and went on to claim the race win. His teammate, Dani Pedrosa, less than two seconds behind, finished the race in the second place.
Marc Marquez went on to claim the MotoGP championship that year.