Garry McCoy and the Ilmor SRT MotoGP team made history in Sunday's Portuguese Grand Prix when they scored the first ever world championship point for an 800cc machine.

The entire MotoGP field will be using 800cc engines next season, but Ilmor's early debut - against the current 990cc machines - was aimed at proving the new team's potential in order to secure backing for a planned two-rider team in the full 2007 series.

After qualifying 20th and last on the X3's first outing with qualifying tyres, the team's goal was simply to finish the race - which McCoy was able to do, albeit four laps down in last. But the Australian had been forced to pit to solve electrical problems ten laps from the end, before which he had been ahead of Jose Luis Cardoso's d'Antin Ducati and closing on the Tech 3 Yamaha of James Ellison. McCoy's best lap was also faster than Cardoso's and within 3.23secs of the fastest race lap, set by Kenny Roberts.

Meanwhile, after returning to the track, the team analysed the data and identified a faulty wheel speed sensor; McCoy was then brought back in and the sensor was disabled before the former 500GP race winner rejoined and finished the race. Over the next few days McCoy will continue to put the X3 through its paces in Estoril as the team work on increasing the bike's performance ahead of the series finale in Valencia at the end of October.

"I think I could have had a better start, it definitely wasn't my best however as we went in to turn one all the guys were bunched up anyway which meant I could get on the back of them right away," recalled McCoy. "Before too long I experienced the chattering that we had yesterday but I tried to keep a consistent and steady pace. I managed to build up some speed and even managed to pass Cardoso before I had to take the bike in to the pit lane for adjustments - after that my mission was just to finish the race, to bring Ilmor a point is an even bigger bonus. We have some work to do before Valencia but I'm looking forward to seeing what we can do there."

"Firstly I'm happy we finished to be honest, it was a real shame about the electrical issue but I am very pleased about the point," added Ilmor owner Mario Illien. "Garry put in a consistent performance and I want to say congratulations to the whole team, they have done a fantastic job this weekend. We have a long way to go but we are learning the whole time. We have some testing time before Valencia so hopefully we'll be in better shape in two weeks time!"

"It's good to finish but the race definitely didn't go as planned," underlined Eskil Suter, of SRT. "The most important thing is that we finished and we scored a point. I'm disappointed that we had the electrical problems but we will work hard over the next few days with testing and let's see what we can do in Valencia. I want to say thank you to the whole crew and Garry for their efforts, they have performed really well."