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Pons chasing Puig anniversary repeat.

Ten-years is a long period of time in any walk of life, but was it really a decade ago that Alberto Puig brought Sito Pons one of his greatest triumphs since swapping the saddle to the safer side of the pit wall?

Puig gave the Pons team victory at Jerez in the 1995 Spanish Grand Prix to become only the second Spaniard to win a premier class grand prix.

Tragically a heavy fall in qualifying for the French Grand Prix less than three months later, wrecked any chance of Puig bringing the Barcelona based team the ultimate prize - the 500cc World title.

Ten-years on and Puig will be aiming to help guide protégée Dani Pedrosa to his second 250cc world title, while Pons returns to Jerez seeking just his second victory in the Spanish Grand Prix as a team principle to compliment his riding victories on the 250cc Honda at Jarama in 1984 and 1988.

Carlos Checa later brought him victories in the Catalunya and Madrid Grands Prix, but Pons looks to his current Camel Honda riders Alex Barros and Troy Bayliss to turn the clock back ten long years at Jerez on Sunday.

A decade ago when Puig was taking the chequered flag at Jerez, Brazilian Barros was not that far behind. Just four places to be precise. Riding the Kanemoto Honda, he was fifth in already his ninth season of grand prix racing. He returns to start his 19th consecutive season in first MotoGP practice session on Friday morning. An amazing record in the toughest and most demanding of all sporting environments.

His new team-mate Bayliss was still at home a decade ago learning his trade in the Australian 600cc Championship, riding a Kawasaki. Grand prix racing was still a dream for the rider from Taree in New South Wales. Ten years on and he's proved himself as a World Superbike Champion and a tough and skilled MotoGP rider.

Only his former Honda Pons team-mate Loris Capirossi comes anywhere near making the same number of grand prix appearances as 34 year old Barros. Ironically, the Brazilian's career started in the 80 cc race in the Spanish Grand Prix at Jarama in 1986, later in the day his team boss Sito Pons finished third in the 250cc race.

The 27 lap race on Sunday will be Alex's 242nd grand prix race. He's won six premier-class races, five of them for Honda Pons and it will come as no great surprise to learn that his first win also came in Spain, the FIM Grand Prix at Jarama in 1993, riding a Suzuki.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Pedrosa, Puig and Pons, Rio MotoGP, 2004
Barros, Jerez IRTA MotoGP tests, March 2005
Bayliss, Jerez MotoGP IRTA tests, March 2005
Edgar Pons, German Moto2 race 2017
Edgar Pons, German Moto2 2017
Axel Pons, German Moto2 2017
Axel Pons, German Moto2 2017
Axel Pons, German Moto2 2017
Axel Pons, Moto2, German MotoGP 2017
Axel Pons, Moto2, German MotoGP 2017
Axel Pons, Dutch Moto2 race 2017
Axel Pons, Dutch Moto2 2017
Edgar Pons, Moto2, Dutch MotoGP 2017
Edgar Pons, Moto2, Dutch MotoGP 2017
Axel Pons, Moto2, Dutch MotoGP 2017
Axel Pons, Moto2, Dutch MotoGP 2017
Cal Crutchlow with new Honda fairing at Assen.
Edgar Pons, Moto2 race, Catalunya MotoGP 2017

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