The Ducati Marlboro MotoGP team is due to promote long-time test rider Vittorio Guareschi to the position of team manager, according to reports, with the Italian hoping that his first-hand experience of what the riders will be feeling will help to propel either Casey Stoner or Nicky Hayden back to title-winning glory in 2010.
Guareschi was himself a podium finisher in the World Superbike Championship (WSBK) before jumping ship to become Ducati's test rider in 2001, and whilst he admits that he fully intends to continue in that role too, he will dovetail it with a more hands-on approach in the team garage.
“I'm going to fill a void, in the sense that a team manager role hasn't existed in Team Ducati before,” Guareschi explained to Motosprint
. “I will be the link between the riders and [technical director] Filippo Preziosi. I will be close to the riders, I'll go on the track to see what happens and I will be an advisor to them. Finally, I will also manage the work in the garage.
“I have been the tester of this bike (the 800cc Desmosedici) since the beginning, so I know it perfectly. In this regard, I can really give the riders a hand. This is why Casey wants me to continue testing too. I don't think I will do it for much longer, though; I'm 38, so I will have to quit in a couple of years time.”