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Ducati: the historic factory makes its return

Ducati: the historic factory makes its return

Ducati: the historic factory makes its return

The last time Ducati competed in the top class of the World Championship was back in the 71 and 72 seasons, but only then as one-offs. The Italian factory entered some of their 500cc machines into the Grand Prix of the Nations which took place in Monza in 1971, and at Imola a year later. In the first of those races, Phil Read finished fourth in a race won by Pagani, and the other Ducati rider, Mongardi, came home in ninth. At Imola, Spaggiari rode his Ducati to a podium finish, finishing third behind the MV Augustas of Agostini and Pagani, whilst Smart ended in fourth position.

The last World Championship victory for Ducati came way back in 1959 in the 125cc race at the Grand Prix of Ulster. The triumph was also the first ever of Mike Hailwood who was 19 years old at the time, having beaten Hocking and Degner. A year later, Hailwood, this time riding a 250cc Ducati, took fourth place finishes in Spa and Belfast, and fifth in Assen.

In 1958, Ducati achieved three wins in the 125 class. Alberto Gandosi claimed two of them, in Belgium and Sweden, whilst Bruno Spaggiari took the other in the grand Prix of Nations in Monza, where the top five riders were all on the same make of bike. In the constructor´s championship that year, Ducati finished second, just two points behind winners MV Augusta.

MotoGP, 2002, Gran Premio Cinzano d'Italia

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