Rainey and Sarron finish 2nd and 3rd in the championship
Rainey and Sarron finishes second and third in the championship
In the 15-round 1989 series, Wayne Rainey of Team Lucky Strike Roberts finished 2nd, and Christian Sarron of the Sonauto Team finished 3rd in the season ranking. The fans were hooked by the fierce three-way championship battle between Rainey, Eddie Lawson, who moved from Yamaha to Honda, and Kevin Schwantz (Suzuki). The title this year was won by Lawson and Yamaha was unable to claim their fourth consecutive manufacturer's title.
In the opening round in Japan, Tadahiko Taira from the Shiseido Tech 21 team took pole position and finished the race in 8th place. A fierce battle between Schwantz and Rainey played out in this GP, with Schwantz coming out on top. In the second round, Rainey took another 2nd-place finish, which put him on top of the championship ranking. Rainey won the following round in the USA, and took subsequent wins in West Germany and the Netherlands to keep him on top of the ranking up until the end of round 12. However, his no-pointer in round 13 put him down to second in the ranking.
Sarron, on the other hand, finished with points in all races except in the Italian GP. With consistent performance throughout the season, including two 3rd-place finishes and one 2nd, he was able to finish 3rd in the ranking, well ahead of Schwantz in points.
This year the YZR500 was supplied not only to Yamaha factory teams but also to Norihiko Fujiwara, Luca Cadalora, Michael Dowson and John Kocinski, which further added to the excitement of the season.
Cadalora finishes 5th on the season
Cadalora finished 5th in the ranking this season after two wins and three 3rd-place finishes. John Kocinski competed in some races this season, including the opening round in Japan, where he took his first-ever GP win and gave Yamaha a great start to the season. He also led comfortably in his home race in the USA. Kocinski thus gained 40 series points to bring himself up to 3rd in the ranking. However, he did not compete in the European rounds.
Cate. Rider Machine 500cc Freddie Spencer YZR500(0WA8) 500cc Niall McKenzie YZR500(0WA8) 500cc Kevin Magee YZR500(0WA8) 500cc Wayne Rainey YZR500(0WA8) 500cc Christian Sarron YZR500(0WA8) 500cc Tadahiko Taira YZR500(0WA8) 250cc Luca Cadalora YZR250 250cc Juan Garriga YZR250 250cc Jean-Philippe Ruggia YZR250
Pos. Cate. Rider Constructor Point 1 500cc E. Lawson Honda 228 2 500cc W. Rainey Yamaha 210.5 3 500cc C. Sarron Yamaha 165.5 4 500cc K. Schwantz Suzuki 162.5 5 500cc K. Magee Yamaha 138.5 6 500cc P.F. Chili Honda 122 7 500cc N. MacKenzie Yamaha 103 14 500cc T. Taira Yamaha 39 16 500cc F. Spencer Yamaha 33.5 Pos. Cate. Rider Constructor Point 1 250cc A. Pons Honda 262 2 250cc R. Roth Honda 190 3 250cc J. Cornu Honda 187 4 250cc C. Cardus Honda 162 5 250cc L. Cadalora Yamaha 127 6 250cc M. Shimizu Honda 116 7 250cc J.P. Ruggia Yamaha 110 8 250cc J. Garriga Yamaha 98
Pos. Constructor Point 1 Honda 257 2 Yamaha 227.5 3 Suzuki 211.5 4 Cagiva 38 5 Fior 32 Pos. Constructor Point 1 Honda 288 2 Yamaha 208 3 Aprilia 116 4 Assmex Yamaha 28 5 Seel Yamaha 1