Ducati will build almost 100 of its jewel-like 1000cc Desmosedici 16-valve twin-cam engines in 2016, to fuel its ambitious programme of supporting no less than eight riders and four teams on the MotoGP grid.
The figure was revealed to BSN in a conversation with Ducati Corse’s Sporting Director Paolo Ciabatti in the paddock at Valencia, as the factory continues its climb back from its darkest times just a couple of seasons ago.
As well as the factory bikes of Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone, the Octo Pramac, Avintia and Aspar squads will also run Desmosedicis. The British riders Scott Redding, at Pramac, and Eugene Laverty at Aspar will be new recruits to the scarlet brand.
“With seven engines per rider in 2016, it will involve 56 engines, plus maybe 28 engines for testing, so it could be a total of around 85 engines,” Ciabatti told Bikesportnews.com
With non-factory Ducatis beating their rival customer Hondas this year, teams seeking to lease bikes are looking to the Bologna factory. The situation marks a huge turnaround for Ducati in just two years, after the factory bikes failed to score a single podium in 2013, and were often beaten by satellite bikes from other manufacturers.
The factory is confident that it will be able to manage the big engine-building programme, and is proud of the fact that the 120 people employed by the Ducati Corse racing division represent ten per cent of the company’s entire workforce.