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Ben Spies - Q&A

Most of the time people who don't have something good to say are people who might not know too much or a kid who's in their mom's basement on the computer whereas people who come to races tend to know a little better, I've been racing long enough to know when something's right or not.
Do you think you had similar equipment at Yamaha to Jorge's?

Ben Spies:
Errm, no. It's one of those things that you can never be sure about, but I just know that at the end of the day the chassis and the engine weren't the same, even at the beginning of the year and there were a couple of engine upgrades during the year that we never got. It's hard to know what was what and what was being tested on my bike, the equipment was not quite the same though.
So you were fighting with lesser equipment at the end?

Ben Spies:
Some people thought you should return to WSBK at the end of last season...

Ben Spies:
We had a couple of offers in WSBK, but Ducati came to me with a good plan. Right now we're not in the best situation with the bike, I'm thinking of the future though and what's going to be happening is that Audi will be coming in making changes to really move Ducati forward - how far that goes remains to be seen.

With Audi coming on board there's going to be a lot more focus towards the racing project and trying to turn that around, that I know is going to happen.

I've got a two year deal and the biggest thing is that it's a factory contract which means that I can ride for Pramac, the factory team or any Ducati team that they have. Pramac is a great team, but the most important thing was having a two year deal with the factory.
How does your bike compare with Nicky's?

Ben Spies:
I don't honestly know, I know me and Andrea [Iannone] are on the same bike. I know that Nicky's got a few parts that we don't but the majority of the bike's very close. With the way I'm feeling right now with the injuries though that's not really something I'm worried about, I'm more concerned about getting me to 100% than the bike. In testing with Nicky they were always a little step ahead of me, I wasn't pushing the bike as hard though so we couldn't really compare.
What is it about the Ducati which makes it so different to the Honda and Yamaha?

Ben Spies:
Ducati ran the steel trellis frame for a long time and has the least experience with the aluminium one. It's only been a year that they've been working with it and it's very new to them but it's the precision of front end that we really have to work on.

It could be the chassis, it could be the weight distribution, it could be a lot of different things and that's what makes it so difficult to fix. It's just a different animal and I'm not saying it can't be a great motorcycle but right now we need more time to understand more about the chassis.

The difference between the Japanese bikes and the Ducati are just little bits of everything, there's nothing that jumps out at you as being hugely different. At the end of the day though, it's just a motorcycle.
An opinion among fans is that too many electronics are killing racing, where do you stand on that?

Ben Spies:
For me the easiest way to fix the racing and to make it closer is the level of the tyres. In WSBK BMW, Kawasaki, Aprilia and Honda can all win because the level of the tyre is much lower.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Spies, Qatar MotoGP 2013
Spies, Qatar MotoGP 2013
Vinales, Rossi, Dovizioso German MotoGP 2017
Girls, German MotoGP race 2017
Dall`Igna, German MotoGP 2017
Holes in Yamaha fairing, German MotoGP 2017
Ducati team, German MotoGP 2017
Vinales new Yamaha fairing, German MotoGP 2017
Vinales new Yamaha fairing, German MotoGP 2017
Vinales new Yamaha fairing, German MotoGP 2017
Vinales new Yamaha fairing, German MotoGP 2017
Sam Lowes, German MotoGP 2017
Cal Crutchlow with new Honda fairing at Assen.
Repsol honda mechanic, Catalunya MotoGP 2017
Rabat, Pol Espargaro, Catalunya MotoGP 2017
Rabat, Pol Espargaro, Catalunya MotoGP 2017
Crutchlow, Catalunya MotoGP 2017
Petrucci, Paolo Campinoti, Italian MotoGP 2017

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