David Thorpe is a name that belongs with the all-time greats of the sport. A three-time World 500cc champion, Thorpe raced in what many say was the golden era of 500cc Grand Prix racing. His rivals were names like Eric Geboers, Graham Noyce, Georges Jobe, Hakan Carlqvist and Andre Malherbe. Twice this month, fans in Europe have been lucky enough to see Thorpe race, once at the Grand Prix of Namur and last weekend at the Grand Prix of Great Britain. Both venues meant a lot to Thorpe: Namur is where he won nearly 20 years ago, England is his home GP. On the Saturday in Namur, Thorpe clocked lap times that would have put him close to qualification in the MX1 class, all this despite not doing any racing leading up to Namur! In England he raced a circuit that was very much a Supercross-styled circuit. With a large crowd in attendance it was really like going back in time. Air horns bellowed into the sky as the former King of British Motocross crossed the line for victory in the Senior World championship. MXLarge.com caught up with the legend and asked him about his weekend in England.
MXLarge: How was that race on Saturday? You must have been bummed to lose it!
David Thorpe: The first moto was tough. The track was tough for me and Jan rode really well. I lead most of the first moto and when somebody passes you on the last few corners and you lose, it's not something I like. He passed me right at the finish, I was pretty pumped for Sunday anyway, but there is nothing worse than being passed three corners from the end. Jan rode well on Saturday though.
I knew if I made a good start in the Sunday race and ran a good pace then I would be okay. I got a good start and could relax a little. It was fun out there. I mean, when you are a British boy at the British Grand Prix, there is a lot of pressure. If you are riding well, then it's great, but if your form has dropped away, then it's tough. You want to win so bad for the crowd, you want it to be perfect. I mean all the boys in MX1, they wanted it.
Was it nice to see Tommy Searle win in the MX2 class?
Yes it was, Tommy would be so happy today, but Billy (MacKenzie) will be bitterly disappointed. Billy will be disappointed for himself, we all know what he can do, and so does he.
Did you like the circuit? It was very supercross styled.
I enjoyed the track, they did a great job here. A win is a win, I had my dad here with me, that was fantastic. I don't really class it with another World championship, but it was a great deal of fun and I enjoyed being a part of it.