Ducati’s incredible show of strength in the first grand prix of the season, with Pecco Bagnaia’s one-two finish, Jorge Martin’s second place in the Sprint Race and Marco Bezzecchi’s third position in Sunday’s race, made it clear that the incredible domination of the Borgo Panigale brand shown in 2022 can continue this year as well.
Gigi Dall’Igna, top manager of the Ducati racing department, took stock of the work of the Reds in the Portuguese Grand Prix, warning that “the new features for 2023 are integrated into a bike that has maintained its balance”. Furthermore, in the next races, there will be “specific improvements” to be introduced, and this could be a warning to the rivals.
“We started the season in the best possible way, picking up where we left off last year. But with something more: the 2023 novelties integrate into a bike that has maintained its balance and ease of handling in every area of the track,” explained Dall’Igna.
Gigi Dall’Igna, Ducati Corse General Manager
Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
“But I’m not that. It is the work in the team that Pecco masterfully finalized with lucid management of the vehicles, optimizing performance with the mastery of a champion who knows what to do and when to do it: it is a sign of great composure, as well as intelligence and awareness”. added reference to its top driver. “All of this is the basic requirement for the improvements we will introduce in the next races. The important thing is to continue with the same determination”.
The new weekend format introduced in MotoGP hasn’t affected Ducati in the slightest: “Even in the Sprint Race we managed, as far as possible, to deploy our forces in a new format that is not easy to interpret from a psychological point of view and full of adrenaline, even more than from a physical point of view. At the end of the two races, we scored one double, with four Ducatis overall on the podium and four of our bikes in the top five positions at the end of the grand prix”.
Dall’Igna had words of praise also for Marco Bezzecchi, who with his second position in the premier class equaled the late Marco Simoncelli at the same age: “Deserved congratulations to the splendid race of Bezzecchi, who is back on the podium with a rtimo excellent race”.
Despite the great dominance, the Ducati director does not want to rest and also underlines the improvements of his rivals, first of all Aprilia and then also the unexpected leap from KTM: “Our adversaries presented themselves strong and competitive. It will be necessary to give our best to reassert ourselves in a season that is going to be long and with many points at stake. The historic lesson of MotoGP is that nothing is easy nor should it be taken for granted.”
Finally, Dall’Igna had a thought for the new official driver, Enea Bastianini, injured after being involuntarily run over by Luca Marini: “One last thought, which unfortunately makes everything bittersweet, goes to Enea. With great regret I think it would be superfluous to say something more. I just want to send a warm hug and my sincere wish that you come back as soon as possible.” The return is scheduled for the Grand Prix of the Americas, scheduled in two weeks.
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