Take a look at the exclusive club in WorldSBK racing history
As Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) crossed the line on Sunday in the Acerbis Czech Round, he achieved the feat of securing his first world championship victory, as well as putting himself and his brother Sam in the exclusive club of winners on the world stage. Having one talented rider in the family is a rarity, but two is something special – we take a look over brothers who have won in the worlds racing paddocks.
Alex Lowes moved over to the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship paddock in 2014, just as his twin brother Sam moved onto into the MotoGP™ paddock. Sam spent three full seasons competing in the FIM Supersport World Championship, stunning the field with his determined attitude and smooth riding style. Winning eight races throughout his career, he took 23 podium finishes and most importantly the title in 2013, beating Kenan Sofuoglu by 49 points. Racing against – and beating - the most successful WorldSSP rider ever, it’s worth looking back on some of his stunning victories in 2013.
Moving over to Moto2™ in 2014, the victories began to come one year later as he settled into the 600cc series. With three victory trophies in his cabinet, Sam Lowes was fourth overall in the championship standings in 2015. His twin Alex moved up through the domestic championships before taking the leap onto the world stage in 2014, and there have been years of hard work put in to get him into winning form – emotionally taking his debut victory around Automotodrom Brno.
But the Lowes’ aren’t the only riders to have won in the WorldSBK paddock, it’s easy to forget the Laverty’s have more trophies in their cabinet. As Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) continues to battle on the world stage, his brothers Michael Laverty and John Laverty have both made their impacts in the WorldSBK paddock.
John Laverty, who has now retired from racing, competed in the Superstock 1000 Championship back in 2003 and took a podium around Imola with a Suzuki GSX 1000R, behind Michel Fabrizio and Riccardo Chiarello. But it was Michael Laverty who took the victory to put them in the prestigious club; again in STK1000 around Assen in 2002. Dominating around the Dutch track, he crossed the line over five seconds ahead his rivals, putting the Irish flag on the top step of the podium.
Whilst their brother Eugene Laverty is the fifth most successful WorldSSP rider in terms of victories, and has over 10 wins to his name in the WorldSBK class – his first coming in 2011 around Monza. The last time Laverty stood on the top step in WorldSBK was back in 2014 with Suzuki at Phillip Island, but as he continues to develop the Aprilia he is edging closer to glory. Taking his season best result of third around Brno, he is preparing for an impressive US Round.
WorldSBK have also had brothers competing in the shape of Carlos and David Checa, and the Spaniards made a big impact on the series. Carlos was the most successful brother, taking 24 victories and 49 podiums over 150 races in the WorldSBK series. Crowned champion in 2011, the Spaniard secured Ducati’s first world title since Troy Bayliss in 2008 and was a sensational rider for the series.
It’s not only WorldSBK who have had successful brothers, as the MotoGP™ world championship is the home to some of the most victorious brothers in racing history. With Marc and Alex Marquez taking over 71 world championship wins between them – 64 to Marc and seven to Alex – and they are the first two brothers to have won World Championships in motorcycle Grand Prix racing. The Lowes twins have a long way to go to match the Marquez’s success, but Alex Lowes’ win around Brno was a good place to start.
Watch some highlights from the WorldSBK round at Brno, or some of the past races with the WorldSBK VideoPass.