As the 2011 MotoGP silly season continues, Loris Capirossi's manager has revealed he is exploring the possibility of a return to Ducati.
Capirossi has plenty of history with Ducati, having joined the Italian factory for its debut MotoGP season in 2003 and then going on to win its first MotoGP races, but a 'bad' year alongside title winner Casey Stoner in 2007 saw the Italian replaced by Marco Melandri.
However, in hindsight, that bad year was actually not so bad, given the experiences of Melandri and then Nicky Hayden alongside Stoner in 2008 and 2009.
Capirossi took one race win, in the same wet/dry event that Stoner lifted the title, plus three other podiums for seventh in the final standings, having scored 166 points from the 18 rounds.
By comparison, replacement Melandri scored just 51 points during the following (18-round) season for 17th in the championship, while Hayden claimed 13th with one podium and 104 points last season (17-rounds).
Meanwhile, Capirossi's move to Rizla Suzuki for 2008 has so far yielded just one podium and a best of ninth in the championship (2009), while 2010 has started frustratingly, with two falls from the first three races - the same fate as former team-mate Stoner.
The 37-year-old recently told Crash.net
of his desire to remain in MotoGP for the new 1000cc rules in 2012, but his Suzuki contract ends this year and Capirossi's manager Carlo Pernat told Italia 1 at Le Mans that he is speaking to Ducati about the possibility of a satellite bike for 2011.
That would mean a ride for Pramac or Aspar, or even a new one rider team.
How serious the contact has been is not known, but Ducati would surely welcome such an experienced rider back into their ranks - although with rookie Alvaro Bautista already signed for 2011, Suzuki would surely be reluctant to lose the vastly experienced #65.