Ducati Vows to Improve Before Qatar GP

Ducati did not take long to respond to their new rider Valentino Rossi in regards to the poor performance showcased by the Desmosedici GP11 racer for the upcoming MotoGP season. After both Rossi and teammate Nicky Hayden missed out on the Top 10 in the last day of testing at Sepang this week, the former admitted publicly that he is not happy with the development of his new bike.

Talking to the media late yesterday, Ducati team boss Filippo Preziosi insisted however that his team will make all the necessary adjustments to improve the GP11 by season start, scheduled to take place 3 weeks from now in Qatar.

Additionally, he stressed the fact that Ducati's development programme this week has been hampered by Rossi's flu on Wednesday, which prevented the Doctor to enjoy any track day in the saddle of his GP11 that day.

In Malaysia we have not finished in a position in line with our original target but this was also due to some back luck,” said Preziosi after the Sepang test. “After a promising start to the test, Valentino became ill and lost a full day on the track, forcing him to cram all of the remaining work into the last day.”

At the end of the 3-day test in Sepang this week, Ducati finished as the 4th best manufacturer in the field, almost 2 seconds off the pace of Honda (who topped all 7 test days this winter). And according to Preziosi, this state of events is happening with Rossi and Hayden already doing their best to develop the GP11.

Valentino, Nicky and all the guys at the track were working flat-out, and we are doing the same back in the factory. We are confident that by going forward with this same level of commitment, and staying focused on our objectives we will realise the potential that we know we have,” concluded the Italian manager.

Ducati's test rider Franco Battaini has also done some testing for the Italian team this week, at Jerez, trying to gather data on the new chassis prior to the last test of the winter, in Qatar.
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