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Carlqvist’s famous motocross beer stunt

Carlqvist’s famous motocross beer stunt

Carlqvist's famous Grand Prix beer stunt

1983 Fremantle Supercross - Hakan Carlqvist

Photo: 1983 World 500cc Motocross Champion Hakan Carlqvist at the Fremantle Supercross in Western Australia (By Peter Kitchingman); Video of Carlvist’s famous beer stunt at Namur in the Belgium Grand Prix on 7 August 1988 (Ulf Molin)

Two-times World Motocross Champion Hakan Carlqvist's beer stunt at Namur Grand Prix

Two-times World Motocross Champion Swedish rider Hakan Carlqvist, who raced down under in 1983, has always been a popular rider amongst die-hard motocross fans.

But five years later on 7 August 1988, he became a folk hero for a different reason – stopping mid-moto in a World Championship Grand Prix to skull a beer.

After announcing his retirement at the start of the 1988 season, Carlqvist  was riding as a privateer, but was still competitive aboard his Kawasaki.

In the lead-up to the event, Carlqvist had joked about the sport becoming too serious and riders no longer having a drink together on the night before a race.

So he organised the drinking stunt with his brother on the basis that he would stop for a beer while racing the Belgium Grand Prix if he was leading a moto by more than 20 seconds.

In the first moto Carlqvist opened up a commanding lead after his main rival David Thorpe (UK) hit a trackside fence and broke a bone in his right hand and pulled out in pain, which meant that Eric Geboers (Belgium) only needed to place in both motos to be crowned the 1988 World Champion.

So, when Carlqvist was leading by somewhat 50 seconds, he pulled aside the circuit where his brother was standing on the fence, put the bike in neutral and drank the beer (See video).

The nearby spectators were screaming like hell and race officials on the other side were left dumbfounded, wondering why he dropped more than 30 seconds in one lap.

But Carlqvist rejoined the race and went on to win it.  He dominated the day at the famous Namur track, winning the second moto too and finishing as the overall winner in this Grand Prix.  

A week later, on 14 August 1988, he finished second to Nicol at the final Grand Prix of the season in Luxemburg and had his final international race at the Motocross des Nations at Villers-Sous-Ecot in France on 10-11 September 1988

Sadly, Hakan Carlqvist passed away on 6 July 2017 at 63 years of age.

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