The premier class nearly men
A few people have come very close to breaking Barry Sheene’s longstanding record since 1981 – but none of them have ever been quite close enough to take home the big prize.
Probably Britain’s best chance, Haslam took nine podiums between 1983 and 1987 in the 500GP class – but never quite made it all the way to the top step. The closest he came was a second place behind Randy Mamola at the 1985 Dutch TT.
Mackenzie’s podium-scoring career spanned from 1987 to 1993, taking seven podiums, but never coming closer to taking a win than third place at the flag.
Not only did Mcwilliams come close to winning the 2000 British Grand Prix, he nearly denied Valentino Rossi his first ever premier class victory in the process. Leading for much of the race, a late charge from Rossi and Kenny Roberts Jr left him third.
It might have been Cal that eventually ended the drought himself, but he’s come close to doing it before now too. Leading the 2013 German Grand Prix, only a late charge by Marquez gave the Spaniard the win.
Much like Crutchlow, a wild gamble for Smith in mixed conditions so nearly paid off at last year’s Misano race, when he stayed on slicks for the entire race as the rain started to fall. With Scott Redding joining him on the podium for the first time two Brits had been there together since Sheene and Tom Herron in 1979. Marc Marquez took the win.
It was so nearly Smith in Misano 2015