MotoGP winter gossip, rumour and intrigue – part four

| | MotoGP
Picture: GeeBee Images

Ducati head cheese Claudio Domenicale has fired a thinly-veiled broadside at HRC, saying he would rather come second in MotoGP using two good riders than win with just one.

The Italian defended a decision to keep Danilo Petrucci in the works team instead of swapping him with Jack Miller, saying: “Winning is important, of course, but I think that manufacturers who only win with the same rider while their second on the same motorcycle struggles to get into the top ten are not as useful for the brand as Ducati.

” I think we are in a very good position. We were criticised when we made this decision, but then Danilo proved that he could be very quick.” So there, Alberto.

Meanwhile, Ducati beard Gigi Dall’Igna has decreed that new signing Johann Zarco has only to work on developing his GP19 this season and get it into a shape on which he can be competitive. Dall;Igna thinks his experience with other manufacturers puts him in a good place to do that.

Meanwhile, over at Zarco’s old gaff, Pol Espargaro has said the Frenchman tried to ride their bike like a Yamaha and it didn’t like it. So spat him off. A lot. “You need time for this bike. You have to get used to it and adapt, you have to get to know the motorcycle and its limits.” Oooo, get her…

It looks likely that Lorenzo Savadori will get the nod to test with Aprilia at Sepang test week. The Italian, who rode for the manufacturer in their last WorldSBK season, has no permanent seat this year after apparently losing his Pedercini Kawasaki chair. Attempts by our WorldSBK staff to reach Pedercini have been unsuccessful.

Circuit of the Americas has had the Tonka boys in over recent weeks and 40 per cent of the surface will be brand new in an effort to take out the massive bumps that have caused real problems over the last couple of years. Turns 1, 2, 9, 16, 18 and 19 have now been re-asphalted, as well as the pit exit and the back straight which was not dis-similar to a Supercross rhythm section.

The handbags between Ant West and the FIM show no signs of abating with the former Kawasaki MotoGP rider accusing the sport’s governing body of championship fixing, among other things. FIM chief Jorge Viegas fired back, saying he hasn’t got the time to reply to West’s lies…

Pecco Bagnaia has admitted he needs to get his shit together this year, starting at the Sepang test, as he fears all of the deals for 2021 will be done by the time the MotoGP circus lands at Jerez. Bagnaia showed massive promise this time last year but it all went downhill for the rookie. He will have a GP20 to ride but that doesn’t guarantee anything apart from not getting blown away on straights.