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A new era for Dovizioso?

There was something interesting about the Italian’s helmet at the 2018 Ducati Team Presentation. Did you spot it?

They say the devil’s in the details and that rang true for Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) in 2017 – to a certain extent at least. The Italian, who won six races and fought for the title down to the wire, explained the two horses on his helmet - one white, one black - and clarified that they represented the rational and the irrational.

Dovizioso's mentality: the white and black horses

The Italian further explained that mental training was the biggest difference in 2017, and that harnessing the power of the psychological, for him, had meant adding in a little more irrationality: balancing his natural instincts – those represented in the white horse – with an added kick of risk; the black horse.

So what was special about the Championship challenger’s helmet in Borgo Panigale on Monday? The horses remained, but the colour had changed. Gone was the white, and both horses were now black. So after his best ever season and having only just missed out on the crown in Valencia, has Dovizioso decided that the secret to the Championship may lie further afield in the realm of the irrational?

After testing and team presentations are over, we’ll begin to find out – and the season begins at a venue of historic success for both the Desmosedici and Dovizioso: Losail International Circuit in Qatar.