Managing greatness: Ducati’s 2024 challenge

The Telegraph delves into the conundrum that can also go hand-in-hand with being on top of the world

It was a hot topic when eight-time World Champion Marc Marquez announced his move to Gresini Racing MotoGP™, and it remains so as 2024 begins: how do you manage that level of rider and reputation moving onto your Independent Team machine – and one that’s not the newest spec – to race against your factory team and reigning Champion?

With the truly incredible rise of the Borgo Panigale factory over the past eight years – it was only 2016 when they won a race again for the first time since Casey Stoner left the marque – it’s one they’ve already had experience with to differing degrees of late. And it ramped up in 2023 as Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing) challenged for the crown right to the final round, albeit on the newest spec of motorcycle too. In 2024, it’s another level again.

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The Telegraph explores it further:

By having Marquez in their stable Ducati have boosted their own stock and nullified part of their competition but what if (when?) #93 starts to use a year-old bike to rustle the Bagnaia/Martin dynamic? Marc claims he has the backing of Ducati management, whatever the outcome. “If you don't feel the support, you don't take the decision,” he explained on his reason to sacrifice a rumoured 18-million Euro annual contract for 2024 to join a Ducati satellite effort. “It's true that I’m in the Gresini team. It's true that I'm riding with the 2023 bike, but this is something that I already knew. Always I feel a lot of respect, and this was and is important for my confidence.”

Read more of the The Telegraph’s dive into the conundrum of how to manage the luxurious embarrassment of riches that comes from ruling the world and hiring some of the very best here.