28 May 2015
MotoGP Italy: Ducati stars chasing ‘big dream’
The two Andreas (Dovizioso and Iannone) claim a victory at both their and Ducati's home track would be a 'big dream', but remain wary of Yamaha threat
Andrea Dovizioso has said breaking Ducati's four and a half year winless MotoGP run at Mugello would be a 'big dream' but acknowledges the factory still has some way to go to overcome a resurgent Yamaha.
The Italian marque has returned to prominence in the premier class with the all-new Gigi Dall'Igna designed GP15, which has bagged five rostrum places in the first five rounds of the year.
However, in the hands of Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo, Yamaha's M1 has also made giant strides. The final five laps in Le Mans, when Dovizioso was unable to stay with the Yamaha duo, underlined the fact that Ducati still 'miss a little bit' of pace.
“It is really a big dream to win at this track, in this moment,” said Dovizioso on the possibility of winning Ducati's first race since the autumn of 2010. “[It] Can be really nice. We will be thinking about that. It is nice to feel a big expectation from everybody for us. It means we are very close to winning. This is nice.
“But the reality is we arrive here from the race in Le Mans, where we were very competitive but we couldn't finish the race with them [Lorenzo and Rossi]. So still at that track we miss a little bit to be competitive for the full race.”
Dovizioso and team-mate Andrea Iannone took part in an official post-race test at the Tuscan track after the Spanish Grand Prix. Although the shakedown was most memorable for the crash which dislocated Iannone's left shoulder, both riders found set-up improvements and 'lapped very close to the circuit record.'
“Now we start from that level. Sure, this is a different track, we made the test, everybody at Ducati is pushing very hard to get the best result. But the reality is very difficult. I believe both of them [Rossi and Lorenzo] are very strong at this track. For the bike they have, but especially their riding style.
“Valentino I think really wants to come back in first position here after a few years, and Lorenzo is very strong at this track. So the reality is difficult but we are there. We are there to fight and we are not so far. So everything is possible.”
Ducati's sole MotoGP triumph at Mugello came in 2009 when Casey Stoner won a dramatic, rain-interrupted race. For Iannone, a home win would represent a career highpoint but believes his team-mate is better situated to do so considering his own injury concerns.
“For sure it is a good dream,” said Iannone, who sits fifth in the world championship. “Win at this track at this moment with this bike. It would be fantastic, but I think the reality at this moment is really difficult for me because the injury is fresh and I think in two or three days it will not be gone. But I'll try my best for sure because I think the bike has a good potential especially at this track because in the test the bike was very fast. I hope Andrea [Dovizioso] if possible can get this result!”
When Rossi was asked at the pre-race press conference whether the local fans would prefer a Ducati or Rossi win on Sunday the 36-year old replied, “It is very good because now in Italy there are a lot of fans for me but also Ducati.
“A podium like in Qatar, at the beginning of the season, was great for MotoGP in Italy. All the people follow and are very happy to see the Italian flag on the podium so here can be perfect like in Qatar - but I think Marc and Jorge won't agree and also Dovi will want to swap the positions.”
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