Dovizioso’s Ducati adventure begins for real at Wrooom
Dovizioso was the centre of attention on the first full day of the event held at the Italian ski resort of Madonna di Campiglio, where he addressed the press about the great challenge that lies ahead. The Italian has not had much luck in his fist ventures with the Desmosedici, falling victim to the weather in Valencia, and then suffering from an old neck injury at the Jerez test at the end of last year.
Dovizioso said: "I have a micro herniated C5 C6 in my neck. I had some problems in the Rally of Monza and in Jerez de la Frontera at the first corner, where it just locked up. I'm fine, even if the micro fracture is still there. It will take a bit more treating, but I’ll be ready for Malaysia. My first impression of the bike, however, was good. I expected a totally unmanageable bike after what I had been told, but it was not. At Jerez the neck problem stopped me, but now with six days in Malaysia, there will be time to figure out the Ducati.”
Sepang will be the real starting point for the Dovizioso’s adventure in red: "The objective is simple. We must work to reduce the gap. I chose this challenge because I know I can do well. I need to get to know everyone, but it is a long-term project and the first race will be less focussed on the results." In terms of working methodology he added: "It will not copy any bike. Each bike has its own philosophy and you have to find all the positives of the Desmosedici. Much will depend on what will have to change."
"We have to be open to any changes. Based on the time available, we will make the possible and necessary changes. It makes no sense to speak on a technical level yet, because I’ve spent too little time riding the Desmosedici. What is sure is that for the 2013 season we will start with the same material from the end of last year. I believe in the long term, but the first year will be special: we have to understand the bike and we will have to work mostly on MotoGP weekends. The first year there will be a lot of work where we decide what to do to get important results."
With regard to replacing Valentino Rossi he said: "Taking the place of Valentino is very special, but the fact that he has not done much with this bike helps."
Dovizioso, who lives just 30 km from Borgo Panigale, and could head to the factory almost any time, said: "I could be a real pain to the racing department (laughs). No, seriously, to be able to work with engineers, who do not see you because they never travel, can be crucial, and will work in our favour."
Finally, Dovi also spoke of his new teammate Nicky Hayden: "Nicky has always been a calm and correct rider. We have a similar character, and if there is a desire to work together and collaborate, I will be the first to share the information with him. He is a good person and there are not many of those riders in the world."
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