Giacomo Agostini (born 16 June 1942) is an Italian multi-time world champion Grand Prix motorcycle road racer. Nicknamed Ago, with an absolute record of 122 Grand Prix wins and 15 World Championships titles. Of these, 68 wins and 8 titles came in the 500cc class, the rest in the 350cc class. For these hitherto unparalleled achievements, obtained over the course of a career spanning 17 years, he is widely regarded as the most qualified competitor to the title of greatest Grand Prix rider of all time.
Born into a wealthy Brescia family, he raced secretly at first for fear of incurring his father’s wrath although success precluded anonymity. 1963 national motor cycle champion in the 175cc class, he made his GP debut for Count Alfonso Morini in 1964. He moved to MV Agusta a year later and the combination soon dominated the sport by winning seven consecutive World Championships in both 500cc (1966 to 1972) and 350cc (1968 to 1974) classes.
That success seemed all too easy at times but his pre-eminence was increasingly threatened by the emerging Japanese manufacturers. So Agostini joined Yamaha in 1974 but broke his shoulder in a crash. He then dominated the 500cc Championship in 1975 to add an eighth and final senior world title. It was his last hurrah for Agostini’s career petered out with a return to MV Agusta and a spell on a private Suzuki.