Following the carbon-chassis innovation Ducati has been working on since the 2008 mid-season, the Italian manufacturer introduced the carbon design instead of the regular tube frame.
“For 2009 we have many new things, starting with the bike: the GP9 is characterized by a major change in the chassis, with the switch from the traditional Ducati steel trellis chassis with a carbon fibre frame that brings the upper part of the engine up to the level of the steering column,” said Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati Corse and General Director of Ducati Products, ahead of the GP9's official launch later today, at Madonna di Campiglio.
“Amongst the other updates on the GP9 one of the most relevant is an evolution of the engine management system, with a new combination of airbox and mapping that should provide a flatter power curve and improve rideability, as well as improving outright power, which currently remains more or less the same as last year,” added Domenicali.
Ducati's goal for the new season is winning back the MotoGP titles from Yamaha. After a successful 2007 year, when Ducati finished in 1st place in all 3 MotoGP classifications – riders, teams and constructors – Yamaha did exactly the same thing in 2008. For the new season, Ducati will also be benefiting from the services of former world champion Nicky Hayden, who will join Casey Stoner in the all-champion lineup for 2009.