To be entirely honest, in the 500cc class, Aprilia didn't actually manage to win a race, even when the 500cc two-stroke was the premier class - despite the fact that it began competing in the category in 1994. The choice of the engineers, who were headed by Jan Witteveen, initially fell to a 400cc twin-cylinder engine, which was much lighter and more agile than its four-cylinder rivals - but also less powerful.
The Dutch genius, who was technical director at the time, explained his unusual choices on more than one occasion, stating: “Let's try to beat the Japanese using other weapons. If we copied the characteristics of these manufacturers, we would lose every time, because we have fewer resources. I always place my trust in Italian and European technology.”