Ducati isn't just going to exploit Valentino Rossi's legendary skills for its MotoGP race team, the company has also revealed that the nine time world champion will play a role in the development of its future road bikes.
Indirectly, technical advances will filter down from the prototype Desmosedici project, but Rossi will also have a direct hands-on input by testing new Ducati road bikes himself.
“The 2011 season opens a sort of third phase for our MotoGP project,” said Claudio Domenicali, General Director of Ducati Motor Holding. “The first was with Loris Capirossi, who in just six races took the Desmosedici to its first win. The second brought the world championship crown, thanks to Casey Stoner, in 2007.
“The big news for 2011, which opens a third phase, is the arrival of Valentino Rossi on the team. It's an important phase for our company, which relies a lot on research and development, and which uses the MotoGP series not only as a venue for winning, but also as a laboratory for advanced research.
“Valentino is universally recognized as a master at taking a bike to its limits, but also at providing feedback that's extremely useful for development. We think this skill will give us a big push for improving our engineering, and to always give our fans the best bikes possible.
“Many of the models we've produced in recent years, starting with the 1198 - our flagship sport bike - but also bikes intended for less extreme application, boast technical characteristics that come directly from our experience in MotoGP, like traction control and aspects of electronic engine management.
“This will happen even more with the new generation of sport bikes that we're working on now, bikes in which this link will be even more direct, from electronic management strategies to the chassis to the motor.
“Filippo's [Preziosi, head of Ducati Corse] work with both of our [MotoGP] riders will be even more evident, and we're certain that the possibility of also having Valentino test our new models and give us his impressions will make this flow of technology even more effective.”