Preparations underway in Ducati camp for this weekend;s Italian GP

Preparations underway in Ducati camp for this weekend’s Italian GP

The Ducati Team has travelled from Germany back home to Mugello, where the Italian Grand Prix—the ninth of eighteen rounds on the calendar—will take place on Sunday.

The circuit that twists through the Tuscan hills north of Florence is one of Valentino Rossi’s favourites, and the Italian has no fewer than nine wins there across all classes. Nicky Hayden, who made the Mugello podium in 2006, is also fond of the circuit. At the Sachsenring, both riders made some promising adjustments to the setups of their GP12s, and now they hope to also confirm the effectiveness at of those changes at the fast Italian circuit.

As always, thousands of ducatisti will converge upon the two beautiful Correntaio grandstands to cheer for the Ducati Team.

“Last Sunday at the Sachsenring, we used a setup that enabled us to be more consistent and to stress the rear tyre a bit less so that we still had a decent pace at the end of the race. It was our best result of the year so far in the dry, so now we’ll start from that base in an effort to improve at Mugello. It’s the Italian Grand Prix, so everyone, including myself, must make an extra effort to do well in our home race. It’s one of the nicest tracks in the world, in terms of the layout of the circuit, the atmosphere and all the fans that come to watch us and support us. We really have to try to do our best.”

“Although I still have a bitter taste in my mouth about last week’s race, I’m very much looking forward to Mugello. It’s one of the best tracks and races of the whole year, especially being there on a Ducati. I’m sure we’ll have a lot of support, and it’s a pretty busy weekend, but it’s a race and an event that I enjoy. It’s certainly not an easy track, as it’s very technical and you’ve really got to be on your marks there. It will be one of the tracks where we really get to open up the 1000s, and I’m expecting some pretty high top speeds. It hasn’t been an easy track for me with Ducati, but I like it a lot. We need to try to put the whole weekend together and do a good result on Sunday, when it really counts.”

“Racing at home, at the end of a stretch of three races in a row, is truly a big responsibility for both the team and the riders, but at the same time, it gives us extra motivation. There’s a big difference between a short, narrow track like the Sachsenring, and one that’s old-style, with long straightaways and big, fast corners like Mugello, but we must manage to find the positive aspects of the setup that we identified in Germany. In this way, we can make it possible for Vale and Nicky to do their best, and also to enjoy themselves in a race that means a lot to both of them.”

Circuit Record: Dani Pedrosa (Honda – 2010), 1:49.531 – 172.389 Km/h (107.118 mph)
Best Pole: Casey Stoner (Honda – 2011), 1:48.034 – 174.778 Km/h (108.602 mph)
Circuit Length: 5.245 km (3.259 mi)
2012 MotoGP Race: 23 laps (120.635 km/74.959 mi)
2012 MotoGP Schedule: 2:00 p.m. Local Time

2011 PODIUM: 1st Jorge Lorenzo, 2nd Andrea Dovizioso, 3rd Casey Stoner

2011 POLE: Casey Stoner (Honda) 1:48.034 – 174.778 km/h (108.602 mph)

2011: 6th (Rossi)
2010: 4th (Stoner)
2009: 1st (Stoner)
2008: 2nd (Stoner)
2007: 4th (Stoner)
2006: 2nd (Capirossi)
2005: 3rd  (Capirossi)
2004: 4th  (Bayliss)
2003: 2nd (Capirossi)


Bike: Ducati Team Desmosedici GP12
Race number: 46
Age: 33 (born in Pesaro 16 February 1979)
Residence: Tavullia (Pesaro, Italy)
GPs: 266 (206 x MotoGP, 30 x 250cc, 30 x 125cc)
First GP: Malaysian GP, 1996 (125cc)
Number of Wins: 105 (79 x MotoGP, 14 x 250cc, 12 x 125cc)
First GP win: Czech Republic GP, 1996 (125cc)
Poles: 59 (49 x MotoGP, 5 x 250cc, 5 x 125cc)
First Pole: Czech Republic GP, 1996 (125cc)
World Titles: 9 (6 x MotoGP, 1 x 500cc, 1 x 250cc, 1 x 125cc)

Rossi’s MotoGP track record at Mugello
2011: Grid, 12th, Race, 6th
2010: Grid, DNS; Race, DNS
2009: Grid, 4th; Race, 3rd
2008: Grid, 1st; Race, 1st
2007: Grid, 3rd; Race, 1st
2006: Grid, 3rd; Race, 1st
2005: Grid, 1st; Race, 1st
2004: Grid, 3rd; Race, 1st
2003: Grid, 1st; Race, 1st
2002: Grid, 1st; Race, 1st
2001: Grid, 1st; Race, DNF
2000: Grid, 3rd; Race, 12th

Rossi’s 250 track record at Mugello
1999: Grid, 6th; Race, 1st
1998: Grid, 4th; Race, 2nd

Rossi’s 125 track record at Mugello
1997: Grid, 3rd; Race, 1st
1996: Grid, 8th; Race, 4th

Bike: Ducati Team Desmosedici GP12
Race number: 69
Age: 30 (born 30 July 1981 in Owensboro, Kentucky, USA)
Residence: Owensboro, Kentucky, USA
Number of GPs: 159 (159 x MotoGP)
First GP: Japanese GP, 2003 (MotoGP)
Number of wins: 3 (3 x MotoGP)
First GP win: USA GP, 2005 (MotoGP)
Poles: 5 (5 x MotoGP)
First Pole: USA GP, 2005 (MotoGP)
World Titles: 1 (MotoGP, 2006)

Hayden’s MotoGP track record at Mugello
2011: Grid, 9th; Race, 10th
2010: Grid, 4th; Race, DNF
2009: Grid, 16th; Race, 12th
2008: Grid, 6th; Race, 13th
2007: Grid, 13th; Race, 10th
2006: Grid, 4th; Race, 3rd
2005: Grid, 4th; Race, 6th
2004: Grid, 2nd; Race, DNS
2003: Grid, 17th; Race, 12th

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