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Pirro joins Ducati line-up at Jerez

30 April 2013

As well as factory racers Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso, Ducati test rider Michele Pirro will also be participating in this weekend's Spanish MotoGP.

Pirro had been touted as a 'replacement' for the injured Ben Spies at Pramac, but Ducati states that Pirro's Jerez status remains as a 'wild-card' and that he will be run by the test team.

As a wild-card, Pirro will not be forced to use Spies' 2013 engine allocation (as a replacement rider would).

The Italian is therefore free to race-test Ducati's latest engine developments, plus any chassis or electronics concepts that might be incompatible with the present Pramac engines.

“In addition to Nicky Hayden, who started last year's race on the first row, and Andrea Dovizioso, we'll have the test team, with our test rider Michele Pirro, who'll be doing his first wild-card race,” said team manager Vittoriano Guareschi.

Guareschi also confirmed that Pirro will be running some experimental parts: “His GP13 will have some new development parts that will help us to focus on the development for the rest of the championship.”

MotoGP wild-cards are allowed two new engines for their exclusive use during each event they enter. By contrast, a replacement rider is deemed to be the original rider for purposes of engine allocation.

Pirro - who retired from last year's Spanish grand prix, when he was racing the Gresini CRT machine - is scheduled to make three wild-card appearances for Ducati this season. Pirro is the first former CRT racer to secure a grand prix start on a factory prototype.


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