12 one-of-a-kind MotoGP and WorldSBK liveries that do a lot …

We’re not going to lie, we were a bit disappointed that the much anticipated (feared) final race for Valentino Rossi in MotoGP came and went without a special bike that sent him soaring

In fact, Rossi and Yamaha are no newbies to changing the corporate colors and sponsor decals of their posts with numerous examples over the years since they got their brush (kind of …) and decided to do something different, so it’s one Shame his swan song was not marked accordingly.

That said, we’ve had some corkers over the years, not just from Rossi, with lots of MotoGP teams that have gone rogue more than once, with examples we honestly would rather have seen all year … here’s a selection of the very best .

Related articles

12. ‘Kentucky Kid’ stars at home

Nicky Hayden – Ducati Corse – 2009 Indianapolis MotoGP

The late Nicky Hayden was a popular figure everywhere, but no more when he competed on home soil in the United States, which was double the privilege in Laguna Seca and Indianapolis in 2009.

Two years after his MotoGP world title with Honda, Hayden was in the middle of a tough first season getting used to the Ducati Desmosedici, but it seems like home support and a patriotic paint job could be worth a few tenths since he’d kept going clinched his first podium with the Italian company with a run to third place.

11. Patriotism on an iconic Yamaha canvas

Colin Edwards – Camel Yamaha Team – US MotoGP 2006, Laguna Seca

While it wasn’t exactly the most faithful rendition of Yamaha’s iconic yellow, black, and white livery from the 1970s and 1980s, its camel back made the M1 more eye-catching in 2006 than in previous years.

That was until Colin Edwards turned things up to 11 with a splash of patriotic Texan-themed stars and flicks to please the home fans (and clear all mentions of tobacco advertising).

10. Red Bull looks to the future with Suzuki

John Hopkins, Kenny Roberts Jr. – Team Suzuki MotoGP – 2005 US MotoGP, Laguna Seca

It’s hard to imagine almost any sport in different capacities without the tell-tale colors of Red Bull sponsorship, but after Red Bull just started its own F1 team, Red Bull gave an outlook on the future of Honda and KTM with a striking one one-off foray with Suzuki in 2005, one that Red Bull couldn’t have been if he had tried.

April 9th ​​sees RED for a good cause

Alvaro Bautista, Aleix Espargaro – Aprilia Gresini Racing – Valencia MotoGP 2016, Valencia

While most liveries are primarily used to impress a sponsor or reward a rider, Aprilia demonstrated how MotoGP could be a force for important causes by partnering with the RED charity.

To raise awareness of HIV and AIDS, Aprilia’s all-red livery was used during the last Valencia MotoGP races in 2016 and 2017

8. Valentino Rossi goes funky goodbye to Honda

Valentino Rossi – Repsol Honda, Valencia MotoGP 2003, Valencia

With a third MotoGP World Championship in his pocket, Valentino Rossi celebrated the season finale in Valencia with a funky Austin Powers-style font.

It would also turn out to be his last appearance on a Honda after it was revealed that he would be joining Yamaha in 2004.

7. Honda goes back to its rally legacy

Dani Pedrosa, Nicky Hayden – Repsol Honda, Valencia MotoGP 2008, Valencia

Honda paid tribute to longtime partner Repsol by returning to the origins of the Spanish oil giant in motorsport with this simple but white retro paint job during MotoGP 2008 in Valencia.

Repsol reflects the life of its rally cars of the 70s and 80s and supported Lancia, Ford and SEAT in the WRC.

6. Marco Melandri’s prickly senses tingle

Marco Melandri – Tech 3 Yamaha, MotoGP Portugal 2004, Estoril

The marketing department for the Spiderman 2 film reached out to MotoGP and Marco Melandri in 2004 for a high-profile product placement that resulted in the Italian’s Tech 3 Yamaha decked out in red and blue and adorned with webbing.

In fact, this marked the second time Melandri became Spiderman to promote the franchise and dressed up as an arachnid superhero in 2000. Better still, the insignia would be donated and auctioned to raise money for charity … so a big win!

5. Yamaha toasting its legacy

Valentino Rossi, Colin Edwards – Yamaha Factory, 2005 US MotoGP, Laguna Seca

While we’ve got used to seeing Yamaha in blue for a number of years, it used to be more of a synonym for yellow, black and white.

Many consider this to be the more attractive look and this unique paint job for Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards in Laguna Seca justifies this statement

4. Kawasaki recalls the 1990s with a breathtaking WorldSBK homage

WorldSBK: Jonathan Rea – Kawasaki Racing Team, 2021 WorldSBK Argentina, San Juan Villicum

OK, we’re cheating a bit here, but we couldn’t help but record this stunning replica of Kawasaki’s first WorldSBK title in 1993 with Scott Russell.

With a retina-burning lime green base, white stripe, and blue wording in the typeface of Kawasaki’s 90s logo, as much as we like the current darker shade, it lets us hope the company will bite the bullet and this takes over again.

As if that weren’t enough, Jonathan Rea’s teammate Alex Lowes drove a burnt orange and black paint job based on the GPZ900R used in Top Gun.

3. Pramac Ducati becomes exotic with Lambo

Jack Miller, Pecco Bagnaia – Pramac Ducati, MotoGP Italy 2019, Mugello

Perhaps it’s the fact that yellow has largely deviated from MotoGP teams over the years, but this one-off Italian MotoGP livery for Pramac Ducati, celebrating distant relative Lamborghini, was a big winner.

With Pramac Racing largely sticking to the same formula in red, white, and blue over the decades, the pop of color helped its two motorcycles stand out in 2019.

2. Rossi and Yamaha’s Italy World Cup Tributes

Valentino Rossi – Yamaha Factory, MotoGP Catalonia 2008, Barcelona

Football enthusiast Valentino Rossi paid tribute to the Italian national team, which played against Spain in the 2008 World Cup final on the same weekend when he competed in the MotoGP of Catalonia with the Yamaha in the synonym pastel blue and even with a football-patterned helmet.

However, with Spain winning the final on penalties, Rossi would appropriately be beaten by Dani Pedrosa in the race.

1. Suzuki pays homage to the GSX-R brand in iconic style

Aleix Espargaro, Maverick Vinales – Suzuki Ecstar, German MotoGP 2015, Sachsenring

Simple, retro, but atmospheric, the white and blue tones of Suzuki’s famous GSX-R brand proudly flaunted during the German MotoGP 2015 and are reminiscent of the entries of the 80s and 90s.

However, we also wish they had gone all the way with white rims, but you can’t have it all …