At Inside Bikes, we run a segment called Rider Of The Week, which focuses on a famous motorcyclist. We’ve covered the careers of legends like Mike ‘The Bike’ Hailwood and Phil ‘The Prince Of Speed’ Read. But everyone has their favourite rider and the Inside Bikes audience have give their opinions on who they think the greatest rider of all time is. Responses were varied, and we’re taking a look at some of them.
Daniel Trolland said that Joey Dunlop was the greatest rider, due to a mix of his talent and charity work. Dunlop is certainly skilled and he’s helped several charities, including orphanages in Romania. In 2016, Dunlop was voted the second greatest motorcycling icon by Motorcycle News, coming behind Valentino Rossi.
It goes to show that fans value good sportsmanship and a friendly personality in their motorcyclists. Dunlop had both and he deserves to be on the list of the all-time greats.
David Makinson identified Mike Hailwood as the greatest rider. It’s not hard to see why, given Hailwood’s accomplishments. One of his greatest achievements was coming out of retirement to win the Isle of Man TT when many people thought he couldn’t do it.
Valentino, Dunlop, Everts and McGrath
David Holland couldn’t name just one rider and decided to split them by divisions. He identified Rossi for track, Dunlop for road, Stefan Everts for MX and Jeremy McGrath for Super X. This demonstrates that different riders have certain strengths.
Hailwood and Saarinen
Graham Paech raised a good point about different generations having different people to look up to. It all depends on who someone connects to and everyone has their own reasons for liking a particular rider. He named Mike Hailwood as the greatest motorcyclist.
On the subject of different generations, Andy Lucas named Marc Marquez as his favourite. Marquez is in his early twenties and has accomplished a lot in his career so far. He’s one of four men to win world championships in three different categories. The other three are Hailwood, Read and Rossi.
Ian Spencer said that Barry Sheene was the greatest rider, due to his bravery. Sheene was definitely one of the most tenacious riders in the history of the sport, surviving a variety of injuries and returning to the track.
The most popular choices were Dunlop and Hailwood. But it’s all about perspective and all of the motorcyclists who were mentioned deserve to be recognised for their skill.