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By Sky Sport MotoGP HD

Ducati in talks with VR46 and Gresini over 2022 link-up

Ducati's Sporting Director, Paolo Ciabatti, confirmed negotiations to Sky Sport MotoGP as 2021's silly season officially kicked off

Ducati Sporting Director Paolo Ciabatti has admitted that the Bologna brand are currently in negotiations with both VR46 and Gresini Racing to take over their second independent team in 2022. Speaking with MotoGP™'s Italian broadcast partner Sky Sport MotoGP at the opening day of the Red Bull Spanish Grand Prix, the Ducati chief said both teams are in the running to replace Avintia Esponsorma Racing next year.

Valentino Rossi's VR46 concern already holds 50% of the Avintia Esponsorama garage after securing a deal late in 2020 in order to confirm a seat on the premier class grid for Luca Marini. However, with Gresini Racing's split from Aprilia and their intention to continue in 2022 confirmed, they are now also in talks with Ducati over replacing the Andorran squad.

"We know that Avintia did not renew so this team will not be in MotoGP in 2022," started Ciabatti. "We have never hidden from the fact that we would like to have two independent teams on the grid next year. We are talking with Gresini and VR46 but it is too soon to say what we will do."

Both Tech3 and LCR look set to continue with KTM and Honda respectively next year, however, the destination of Yamaha and Ducati's independent concerns remain up in the air. Add into the mix the possibility of both Suzuki and Aprilia adding second teams to their MotoGP™ efforts and the following weeks and months will be very intriguing as the 2022 premier class grid begins to take shape.

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