1986 - 1989


The RVF750, now with single-sided swingarm, wins endurance world title with Patrick Igoa and Suzuka Eight Hours with Gardner and Dominique Sarron. VFR750 rider Fred Merkel completes hat-trick of US Superbike crowns. Briton David Thorpe wins his second consecutive 500 MX title, Honda monopolise championship top three. Tough Aussie Wayne Gardner takes the baton from injured Freddie Spencer and takes second place in the 500 World Championship with the NSR500.

Cyril Neveu Paris Dakar 1987 Honda NXR750 / Honda RC30 Superbike 1988


Honda two-stroke technology dominates GP racing, Wayne Gardner winning seven 500 GPs to take 500 title, German veteran Toni Mang winning the 250 crown with his NSR250. Computer-controlled variable exhaust valve developed. Hi-tech NR750 racer with oval pistons contests Le Mans 24 hours, scoring pole position. Up-and-coming Californian talent Wayne Rainey wins US Superbike crown and Daytona 200 with VFR750. Eric Geboers scores Honda's first 250 MX world success. Dirt track legend Bubba Shobert completes hat-trick of US Grand National dirt track crowns, riding an RS750D. Takeo Fukui is new president of HRC.


Honda returns to 125 GP racing with RS125, a low-cost two-stroke. Ezio Gianola wins two GPs on the RS and finishes second in 125 World Championship. Spanish hero Sito Pons wins the first of two successive 250 world titles with NSR250. HRC begins development of electronically controlled two-stroke fuel injection system. Big-talking American Fred Merkel takes inaugural World Superbike title aboard RC30, Honda's hugely acclaimed V4 superbike. British privateer Carl Fogarty wins TTF1 crown on RC30. Freddie Spencer finishes a close runner up in 500 GPs. Eric Geboers and Jean-Michel Bayle win MX title double with 500 and 125 successes. Katsumi Ichida appointed president.

David Thorp / David Thorpe MX500 GP Belguim 1989 Honda CR500M


Master of smoothness Eddie Lawson joins Honda and carries off the 500 World Championship with his NSR500. Honda wins tenth 250 Constructors' World Championship. Merkel, Fogarty and their RC30s repeat their World Superbike and TTF1 titles. Privateer John Ashmead wins Daytona 200 aboard an RC30. Frenchmen Dominique Sarron, Alex Vieira and RVF750 win Suzuka Eight Hours. Gilles Lalay proves Honda power in the most gruelling of conditions by winning Honda's fourth consecutive Paris- Dakar race aboard his NXR750. Jean-Michel Bayle and David Thorpe win 250 and 500 MX titles. Takeo Fukui begins second term as HRC president.

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