Fast, dangerous and more than a little strange… Here’s what you need to know about Macau
The Macau GP track, often called the Guia circuit, is 3.8 miles long. Spectators are not allowed to watch anywhere along its length except from the grandstands at the paddock and Lisboa Bend.
The bike race takes place alongside the Formula 3 car race during the four-day Macau event. World champions Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher were both Macau winners.
John Macdonald is the only man to win Macau on two and four wheels. The Australian won the bike event once, in 1969, and the car race four times – in 1965, 1972, 1973 and 1975.
Michael Rutter is the most successful Macau bike racer with eight victories. The 44-year-old took his first win in 1998 on a Honda RC45, with his latest in 2012 on a Honda Fireblade.
Macau is one of the few races Joey Dunlop never won in his 31-year career. Joey’s brother Robert, who won Macau in ’89, joked that it was the only trophy he ever received that didn’t already have Joey’s name on it.
IRTA boss Mike Trimby was the driving force behind the Macau bike GP for 34 years. He raced Macau himself in 1978, finishing third.
No wet tyres are taken to Macau. If there is rain the bike race is cancelled.
Hiroshi Hasegawa’s fastest lap in 1967 was just over 60mph. Stuart Easton’s current lap record, set in 2010 on a Kawasaki ZX-10R, is 95.32mph.
In recent years the Macau Grand Prix has been dominated by British riders. Brits have won every single bike race there since 1998, and 32 of the last 35 races. In the event’s early years the most successful nation was Japan. 10 The Macau GP was initially a single 30-lap race, before becoming a twoleg affair over 15 laps in 1979. In 1995 it was cut to a single 15-lap race. Today it’s run over 12 laps.