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Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden ready to return to action with the Ducati GP12 | 2 comment(s)

Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden ready to return to action with the Ducati GP12

The Ducati Team riders were the stars of the first day of Wrooom 2012 at Madonna di Campiglio, with Nicky Hayden first to “take to the track” and answer questions from the international press in attendance. The American, who is recovering well enough from his injured left scapula that he has already removed his sling, then passed the baton to a pleased Valentino Rossi, who is motivated to get back in the saddle and start winter testing in just over two weeks.

“I’m much better,” confirmed Nicky Hayden, “so I’ve been able to remove the sling right on schedule. Here at Madonna di Campiglio, I’m starting to do a little training on a stationary bicycle under the supervision of the team physiotherapist, with the goal of being ready for the Sepang test (31 January – 2 February) as strong as possible. I can’t wait to ride the GP12, because it will be my first time ever. I wasn’t able to try it in the post-race test at Valencia, and I definitely won’t miss the next chance. I never made any secret that I prefer the new displacement to the 800s, although I think things will be much different than in 2006, beginning with the tyres, and the electronics have also come a long way. We’ll have more power, and we’ll have to find the right balance between controlling it while still taking as much advantage of it as we can. I’ve stayed in contact with Filippo (Preziosi) and the guys in the Ducati Corse department over the winter, and I know they’ve worked really hard. We’ll have a lot of things to try at Sepang. I know it won’t be easy, but I’m also confident that we can start to reduce the gap between now and the first race at Qatar. I believe in Ducati, this project and Filippo, and I want to get back on my Ducati as soon as possible.”

Wrooom unveils the Ducati GP11's new livery | 8 comment(s)

Wrooom unveils the Ducati GP11's new livery

The spectacular scenery of the Trento Dolomites served as the background for the first official photos of the Desmosedici GP11 in its new livery, while today’s meeting with the press starred Claudio Domenicali, General Director of Ducati Motor Holding, and Filippo Preziosi, General Director of Ducati Corse.

“The 2011 season opens a sort of third phase for our MotoGP project,” Claudio Domenicali began after saluting the audience. “The first was with Loris Capirossi, who in just six races took the Desmosedici to its first win. The second brought the world championship crown, thanks to Casey Stoner, in 2007. The big news for 2011, which opens a third phase, is the arrival of Valentino Rossi on the team. It’s an important phase for our company, which relies a lot on research and development, and which uses the MotoGP series not only as a venue for winning, but also as a laboratory for advanced research. Valentino is universally recognized as a master at taking a bike to its limits, but also at providing feedback that’s extremely useful for development. We think this skill will give us a big push for improving our engineering, and to always give our fans the best bikes possible. Many of the models we’ve produced in recent years, starting with the 1198—our flagship sport bike—but also bikes intended for less extreme application, including the Multistrada 1200, Streetfighter, Diavel, and Monster, boast technical characteristics that come directly from our experience in MotoGP, like traction control and aspects of electronic engine management. This will happen even more with the new generation of sport bikes that we’re working on now, bikes in which this link will be even more direct, from electronic management strategies to the chassis to the motor. Filippo’s work with both of our riders will be even more evident, and we’re certain that the possibility of also having Valentino test our new models and give us his impressions will make this flow of technology even more effective. It’s an important challenge and a big responsibility, but also a great opportunity to grow, made possible by a combination of factors: In my opinion, there are three principals. First: The positive results that the company is having in a very difficult, contracting market. In the year just concluded, we grew our sales by 5% despite the fact that the segment for large-displacement motorcycles shrunk by over 13% in 2010.

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