It was a Japanese wildcard upset in a wet 2002 Suzuka MotoGP 250 World Championship race, held April 7, when production TZ250 mounted Osamu Miyazaki (Motorex Daytona Yamaha) dominated the 19-lap event. After qualifying eighth overall in dry conditions, Miyazaki timed the start to enter turn one for the first time behind race leader Naoki Matsudo (Dark Dog Yamaha Kurtz), before working his way past on the second lap. From this point Miyazaki took control of the race. He was one of a few riders to dip into the 26s, with only wildcard counterpart Dalsaku Sakai (Honda) able to match the 35-year-old veteran's intense pace.

The win has proven to be the highlight of Miyazaki's racing career - a rider who finished 3rd in the 2001 Japanese 250 Grand Prix Championship - and it left him speechless.

"All I can say is that I'm completely satisfied," said the beaming Japanese. "I never expected this result; the bike and tyres were very good and until the last few laps I concentrated on conserving them until I needed them the most."

Behind second placed Sakai, Randy de Puniet led the fight for the final podium place. The Frenchman held onto third even after the aggressive attacks of Hiroshi Aoyama (Honda) and Haruchika Aoki (Honda) on the final lap - both riders ending up in the gravel trap with the finish line in sight.

Sebastian Porto produced a fantastic factory supported debut result for the Petronas Sprinta Yamaha TVK team in the unpredictable conditions when he worked his way through the field from 14th to finish fifth, just ahead of Matsudo. Porto's Malaysian teammate Shahrol Yuzy started strong but ended the day with a DNF result - over-enthusiasm seeing the YZR250 rider highside on the eight lap.

"I am happy to have finished in fifth place in my first ride for this team," said Porto. "It's a good feeling and the 11 points, which were tough to get in these conditions, will help me a great deal at the end of the year. It was very slippery out there with all the water on the track, but the bike was working well and that made all the difference.

"I was very careful in the beginning because I'd seen how many 125 guys had fallen during their race. But once I felt comfortable and had adapted to the situation I opted to push for a good result."

"I am very sorry for the team, because they have put in so much effort for me," said Yuzy. "It was very slippery from the first lap and that made the situation quite tricky. I pushed as hard as I thought was safe but still I made a mistake and crashed under power."