Bad Boy No.4: Mick Doohan

Doohan was a hardman even when the Arai came off, here is a chronicle of his brush with the law

Before Valentino Rossi came on the scene, many people were calling Mick Doohan the greatest motorcycle racer of all time. The Australian was the absolute master of the fire-breathing two-stroke 500cc machines when they were at their most evil and he won five consecutive world titles on NSR500 Hondas between 1994 and 1998. Doohan’s dominance of the premier class was so complete, and his rivals so far out of his league, that he once claimed racing was ‘boring as shit.’

As well as his ultra-aggressive riding style, Doohan was also famed for his absolute disregard of pain and injuries that would have ended the careers of lesser men. “I’m not a painkiller sort of person.” Doohan said, preferring instead to grit his teeth and live with the pain.

When he finally did suffer career-ending injuries in a crash at Jerez in 1999, Doohan became advisor to Rossi at Honda before finally disappearing from the sport once it became clear there was nothing he could teach the Italian superstar. But he hit the headlines again for all the wrong reasons in 2006 when he was arrested at a strip club in Darwin, Australia.

Security staff had asked the former champ to leave the Honeypot club at 2.50am after he seemingly got over-enthused with the entertainment and started performing his own strip tease. When challenged, Doohan threatened the bouncer, asking him, “How good are you mate?” Adding, “I’m going to job you.” Knowing the clout his name carries in Australia as a national hero, Doohan then boasted “If you want your job here, leave me alone, and if you ever want to work in Darwin again, I suggest you leave me alone.”  What a charmer.