Motorcycling: Fourth world title is Fogarty's ride and joy
Journalist and novelist Andrew Martin is the author of the 'Jim Stringer' series of novels based around railways. He has written for the Independent on Sunday, the Evening Standard, the Sunday Times and the New Statesman among others.
Monday 13 September 1999
Victory, albeit in controversial circumstances, in the first race at Hockenheim provided more than enough points to clinch the title: he needed only to finish the race after his title rival and team-mate, Troy Corser, suffered a mechanical failure five laps from the chequered flag.
Fogarty had finished in second place, but a red flag on the penultimate lap when he was ahead of Aaron Slight's Honda denied the New Zealander the win after he slipped past the Ducati on the final lap.
Understandably, Slight was enraged, but Fogarty could not have cared less and he pulled a succession of exultant wheelies on the wind-down lap. At one point, he dismounted and fell to his knees before a grandstand brimful of supporters waving the flag of St George. Some 50,000 British fans had travelled to Germany to cheer on "Foggy", who provided British sport with a cause for celebration.
In typically forthright manner, Fogarty's first words after victory were an apology to those supporters. "I'm just relived that I can eat food now, I can sleep at night now and relax at home and be a nice person for a while because I've been hard work these last few weeks for everybody, including the fans. I've not really been too kind to them; I've been ignoring them. But I'm sorry, it's just that I've been under pressure, so hopefully I'll have a bit more time for them now."
Fogarty appeared to allow Slight to pass him on the final lap and claim a first victory of a frustrating season, but race officials reversed the positions. "Today was about winning titles, not races," Fogarty said. Slight, in high dudgeon, boycotted the podium ceremony. "I know I won that," he fumed. "The red flag was out after we crossed the line. The guys fell off behind us at the first chicane."
It was Fogarty's 11th victory of the season and confirmed the 33-year- old's status as the first Briton since Barry Sheene in the late 1970s to achieve fame beyond the sport.
Fogarty's desire for victory is such that, in the second race, he gained the lead on the last lap before Pierfrancesco Chili used the slipstream effect on the penultimate corner to carrying his Suzuki to the chequered flag first. But the round, and the title, belonged to Fogarty.
Latest in Sport
Louis van Gaal denies problem with Wilfried Zaha despite Manchester United forward being given no game time
Calum Chambers: Who is Arsenal's £16m right-back target?
Manchester United latest: Angel Di Maria move no closer as Juan Mata emerges as Louis van Gaal's favoured No 10 as prospect of signing
Arsenal transfer news: Versatile Calum Chambers is a 'gamble', admits Arsene Wenger as Arsenal spending passes £50m
Arturo Vidal to Manchester United: Louis van Gaal resurrects £35m move for midfielder
The secret report that helps Israelis to hide facts
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Were 'Poor Doors' added to mixed developments so wealthy residents don't have to go in alongside social housing tenants?
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
A new Russian revolution: The cracks are starting to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Opponents of Israel's military operation in Gaza are the real enemies of Middle Eastern peace
£28000 - £30000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: An ambitious...
£50000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: Senior SAP MM C...
competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP BW BO - 6 MONTHS - LONDON London (Gr...
£40000 - £45000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: Job Title: HSE Mana...