Incidents and bad luck have clearly played a significant part in the 2016 Ducati Desmosedici so far failing to achieve the results of its predecessor.

After eight rounds of the MotoGP season, three podiums for the 2016 machine compares with six by this stage for the GP15.

But some similarities between the 'limits' of both machines have also begun to emerge.

"In Barcelona [round six] came out some limits," Dovizioso explained last time at Assen. "It confirmed we have some limits very similar to last year, even though the tyre is now completely different."

Pressed on what those limits are, the Italian added: "It is never just one thing, but in the long corners we struggle a bit and in Barcelona the grip was very low, which is also worse for us."

While both Dovizioso and especially team-mate Andrea Iannone went on to be competitive at Assen, much of the Dutch circuit is characterised by fast kinks rather than long turns.

By contrast, the tight and twisty nature of the Sachsenring - venue for this weekend's German round - means bikes are rarely upright.

"I think the layout of the Sachsenring is not ideal for the characteristics of our bike, because it has a lot of long left-hander corners where you have to keep the throttle partially open and our bike is not yet perfect in these conditions," Dovizioso confirmed

"In any case you never know until first practice because it might be better with the different tyre this year. It could be like Assen in the dry, where we were very competitive."

While Dovizioso fell while fight for the lead in the restarted wet Assen race, Iannone - penalised with last on the original grid for a collision with Jorge Lorenzo in Catalunya - claimed fifth, which is also where he finished in last year's German round.

"The Sachsenring circuit hasn't been particularly kind to us over the last few years, but hopefully we will improve this year because the bike is much better,2 Iannone said.

"In the past we also had a bit of difficulty on the Assen track, but this year we were competitive all through the weekend, so I'm sure we can do a good race in Germany."

By Peter McLaren