Motorcycle News (UK) - - Features -

The name of Barry Sheene is syn­ony­mous with Suzuki’s RG500. He helped de­velop it, spent most of his ca­reer rid­ing it (1974-1979 and 1983-1984) and won 18 GPS and two 500cc world cham­pi­onships on it.

The RG500 was raced for 13 years be­fore be­ing re­placed by the RGV500 in 1987. It won four rid­ers’ world ti­tles, seven con­struc­tors’ ti­tles, and 49 in­di­vid­ual Grands Prix.

Sheene signed for Suzuki in 1973 so was heav­ily in­volved in the devel­op­ment of the RG500. He de­buted the bike dur­ing the 1974 sea­son and won his first 500cc GP at Assen on it the fol­low­ing year. By 1976 the fast-but-fickle RG500 was well and truly sorted, to the point where nine out of the top 10 plac­ings in the cham­pi­onship were Suzukis.

Sheene was a bril­liant rider but he also needed a bril­liant bike in or­der to win his first 500cc world cham­pi­onship. This is his 1976 Suzuki RG500 in de­tail.

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