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Paolo Ciabatti has shunned rumours of a switch in teams for Danilo Petrucci and Jack Miller and the introduction of Johann Zarco to the Pramac Racing and branded it as “b******t” at the Official MotoGP™ Test at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit in Valencia. Ducati’s Sporting Director was quick to quash any rumours when queried on whether there was any truth to the matter and insisted that they were solely rumours.
Rising to the surface across the Grand Prix weekend, there had been some rumours suggesting that Danilo Petrucci would be replaced at the Ducati Team for 2020 by Jack Miller. On Sunday, rumours continued to rage, and speculation began to gather about whether Johann Zarco would be at Pramac Racing, leaving ‘Petrux’ over at the now-satellite Avintia Ducati team. However, Ciabatti silenced the rumours and confirmed that the line-ups would not switch around at the official Ducati Team and at Pramac Racing.
“Can I say something that won’t sound very nice,” began Ciabatti, immediately suggesting that he would be quick to stamp-out any rumours with regards to the line-up. “B******t! We never spoke about this; this came out in the paddock, somebody had this idea, but we never had any idea to make any changes to the factory team or the Pramac team.”
Commenting on the prospect of welcoming Zarco to the Ducati family at Avintia Ducati, Ciabatti said: “We had a conversation with Johann yesterday to understand his position. He has an option to go back to Moto2 with the Marc VDS team, so I think we will understand more in the next few days. I think that to know what’s going to happen next year, it’s good to make a decision about them pretty soon, so we can take the next steps.”
Day two of testing in Valencia continues tomorrow at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit, where Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) will look to maintain his position at the head of the timesheets, whilst Ducati lead the charge to the trio of Yamahas at the front of the field.
1 year ago