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Ducati Marlboro Team present Desmosedici GP4 in Bologna

Ducati Marlboro Team present Desmosedici GP4 in Bologna

Ducati Marlboro Team present Desmosedici GP4 in Bologna

The Ducati Marlboro Team's 2004 MotoGP World Championship campaign got underway today with an international media presentation at the check-in area of Bologna's "G. Marconi" Airport. After the formal presentation, the new bikes were immediately crated up and air-freighted to Malaysia, where the team will begin its first tests of the preseason at the Sepang Circuit.

"Italy, Emilia Romagna, Bologna, Borgo Panigale, these are our roots, and it is here that we find the inspiration, the strength and the passion to try and win on race-tracks all over the world" declared Federico Minoli, Ducati Motor Holding and Ducati Corse Chairman. "Our DNA was created in this area; it is a DNA made up of racing, great challenges and important successes. Today we are here to send the Ducati Marlboro Team on their way for the 2004 MotoGP championship. This is an important commitment that we are only able to undertake thanks to the solidity of the company, the talent and credibility of Ducati Corse, and our increasingly important partnerships and sponsors. The commitment confirms the heart and the passion that links all our fans, who are proud to form part of this fantastic world of Ducati."

The Ducati Marlboro Team's sporting activities and aims were also presented during the event. Claudio Domenicali, Ducati Corse Managing Director, declared: "The results obtained confirm that the project has solid foundations, on which we must continue to grow, and we feel that we are stronger than one year ago. I am sure that the season that is about to get underway will see us contenders in a World Championship that on paper is very evenly balanced and for this reason even more exciting. We are starting the season with the knowledge that we have grown up but aware that the project is still young and in its development phase. Everyone in the company, from Loris and Troy, continues to demonstrate a devotion and competence that makes me very proud."

Loris Capirossi and Troy Bayliss will be the two factory Ducati Marlboro Team riders who, for the second successive year, will race the Desmosedici GP4, together with tester Vittoriano Guareschi. "With Loris and Troy in the team we are sure that we are in a position to obtain important results at every race" declared Team Director Livio Suppo. "Both were chosen not only for their riding skill, but also for their ability to always give their utmost with enthusiasm and determination. They were fundamental in the Desmosedici's development process and we are certain that they will again give us some great satisfaction this year."

The undisputed star of the event was the 2004-spec version of the ‘Desmosedici', the D16GP4, which boasts a number of important differences and changes from the 2003 version. As well as a new, more exciting and aggressive livery, the bike has undergone changes in aerodynamics, chassis and in the engine, which the factory claims has more than 230 HP.

"We made changes in different areas of the chassis and the engine, despite remaining faithful to the basic philosophy. The result is a major evolution of last year's bike" declared Technical Director Filippo Preziosi. "The experience we accumulated in the 2003 season was fundamental in the creation of this bike, and we are extremely satisfied with the result and very confident."

The new Ducati Desmosedici will be setting off tomorrow for Sepang, where the Ducati Marlboro Team will start its championship preparations with three days of testing from 11-13 February, followed by a further three days at Phillip Island.

MotoGP, 2003, Ducati Marlboro Team

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