Ducati Blows the Jerez Records to Smithereens, Faster than both Lorenzo and Marquez

Andrea Dovizioso at the Valencia test in 2014 1 photo
Things are a-changing over at Ducati as Team Red is continuing testing the 2015 bikes in Spain at Jerez. The latest news we have from Jerez see Andrea Dovizioso shattering all the track records as he seems to ride a bike which is almost unnaturally fast. His best lap round the Jerez circuit was clocked with 1’38.9, the best-ever performance for both the rider of Forli and the Desmosedici on this track, in tests or during races.
This is even more spectacular as Dovi’s lap time is 6 tenths better than the official track record which belongs to Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo and is almost a second (9 tenths) under Marc Marquez’ best performance in May 2014. In that race, Dovizioso’s current team mate Andrea Iannone did not finish as he crashed out of the race, while the Ducati rider was 5th, with a 28-second gap from the leader Honda. Dovi’s best lap was 1’41.062, so the progress is noticeable, to say the least.

“Lap times matter when the others are out there”

Despite having all the reasons to jump with joy, Ducati is playing it cool. It’s been more than once when being fast testing on certain circuits gave Borgo Panigale high hopes which turned out to be empty dreams, so now everyone is treating things with a lot of care.

Dovizioso says that the only lap times which matter are those clocked when all the riders are on the track. They alone are the ones which bring in points, podiums or even victories. However, the Italian was happy to see that all the efforts seem to start to pay off, 4 months or so ahead of the 2015 kick-off round. The next official tests in Sepang in February will bring a confirmation whether the new Desmosedici, so far still called GP14.2 is on par or even better than the competition. Dovizioso’s colleague was one tenth slower, sharing almost the same pace.

Dovi also said that this phase of testing is extremely important and this is why the team is relying on their feel with the bikes, instead of using only test riders.

Unconventional solutions involved

Ducati boss Gigi Dall’Igna declared that the team used “unconventional” solutions for the Jerez test. Ducati was unable to put these solutions at work during the championship for reasons which still remain unknown. However, Dall’Igna says that the bikes tested at Jerez are very close to what will become the GP15 motorcycle which will take part in the Sepang official test in February 2015.

Here are some Jerez times from yesterday:

1. Dovizioso (Ducati) 1'38 "9;
2. Iannone (Ducati) 1'39 "0;
3. Bradl (Forward Yamaha) 1'39 "593;
4. Pirro (Ducati) 1'40 "5 (test rider);
5. Bautista (Aprilia) 1'40 "598;
6. Barbera (Ducati) 1'40 "629;
7. Baz (Forward Yamaha) 1'41 "206;
8. Melandri (Aprilia) 1'42 "006.

All the times above are unofficial times, but it’s obvious that the Ducati are much better than they were one year ago, and this make us wish the Sepang tests draw nearer faster. Is 2015 the year when Ducati claims back the glory of old? Time will (properly) tell.
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