WorldSBK Indonesia: Dall’Igna on Ducati double

| | WorldSBK
Picture: GeeBee Images

Alvaro Bautista completed a long sought after double for Ducati on Sunday by clinching the WorldSBK title a week after Pecco Bagnaia did the deed in MotoGP.

Ducati were the great WorldSBK dominators at one time, and for a long time, but once again, to a great extent in MotoGP and a lesser one in WorldSBK, the Bolognese sorcerers are the manufacturer to beat.

Ducati Corse boss Gigi Dall’Igna and the whole Ducati company are not resting on their freshly awarded double layer laurels, despite having just won their first WorldSBK for 11 years to add to their long awaited return to MotoGP championship status. In short, they are bringing a new version of the bike Alvaro Bautista just used in full race trim to beat all comers in 2022.

“You always have to do something more, because also the others work and you don’t know what the others are doing,” Dall’Igna confirmed when asked if a new bike was necessary. “So if you want to stay on the top, every time you have to develop something new and you have to introduce some new concept, even if this could create some problems and some confusion.

“This is our job, try to improve without losing the way.”

With the Panigale V4R always containing a lot of MotoGP inspiration and outright tech transferring, Dall’Igna said that Ducati uses knowledge from one category to help another, in any case.

“For sure because we have only one philosophy,” he stated. “Everything that we can introduce in the MotoGP that can work here in Superbike. We develop it also for the Superbike but this is true also the vice versa. If you find something good in the Superbike, after that we try to introduce it on the MotoGP.”

Dall’Igna was once upon a time Aprilia racing boss, before being taken on by Ducati. Ultimately, however long it took, Dall’Igna has made a difference that has resulted in championship wins in the two big categories. Does he now have greater clarity of what had changed since he joined Ducati, to end up double Wold Champs? What changes has he made within Ducati Corse to make it quite so successful?

“I think that the main thing was the organisation of the team, the company, the Ducati Corse team,” he responded. “Now I think that everybody is focused on the result, and everybody can help each other to do the best job.”

What practical advantages might Ducati Corse take from these two championship wins - more sponsorship, better resources, as well as the great glory and increased brand kudos?

“Honestly speaking,” said Dall’Igna, “I think that we have what we need to develop both projects. So, I’m happy about the resources that Ducati gives us to develop both bikes.”

It’s taken a long time for Ducati to win again in WorldSBK , even though they have had good rides on their books. How close did Ducati come to signing Jonathan Rea, for example?

“I think everybody is in touch with the best riders,” said Dall’Igna. “Johnny is one of the best riders of the Superbike championship, so I think that all the manufacturers have to speak with him, and not only with him. I think that a lot of other manufacturers talk with Alvaro. This is our job. So, it’s normal.”

The big questions is what was missing in those years that Ducati didn’t quite win? Does Dall’Igna know exactly what was missing in the years that they came close to being champion for the first since Checa? “It’s difficult to answer this question, to say what we missed, but for sure we missed something…” Dall’Igna concluded coyly.

Now Dall’Igna and all at Ducati Corse have to do the most difficult thing in racing - win titles back-to back - and in not one of the two big bike championships but both of them.

Picture: GeeBee Images
Picture: GeeBee Images