Danilo Petrucci will start this weekend's Valencia MotoGP finale with a 16-point advantage over team-mate Scott Redding in their battle to secure a factory GP17 next season.

The Pramac riders currently use year-old machinery, but Ducati are to offer the satellite team one 2017 machine - as used by official riders Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso.

To decide which Pramac rider gets the GP17, it was agreed that it would go to whoever scored the most points from Brno onwards (dropping one worst result). That system was then tweaked after contact from Petrucci led to a fall for Redding at Aragon, but the Italian remains 16 points ahead of the Englishman heading into this weekend's decider.

"Yes, it's 16 points," Petrucci confirmed. "Should be 23, but with the Aragon clash the team decided to give [Scott] the points when I touch him, we were ninth and tenth and they gave him seven points.

"16 is quite enough but everything can happen in racing - especially with me! So until the last corner of the last lap nothing is decided. Scott is very strong, maybe it's going to rain..."

Given that Petrucci - like Redding - is a proven frontrunner in the wet, would he take the risk to try and become MotoGP's tenth winner of the season on Sunday, or play it safe to make sure of the GP17?

"It's a possibility, an opportunity, that I really hope to feel on Sunday," Petrucci replied. "If I have the feeling to win, for sure I have to watch where Scott is. Because if Scott is in tenth and I have the chance to win, for sure I will try. But if Scott is second and me first...

"It would be the first victory for both of us in MotoGP, but the factory bike... So I would have to choose between 'the egg today and the chicken tomorrow'! Anyway, it's a long time until Sunday and first I have to do my own work and arrive on Sunday very focussed and confident. This is the main thing I want."

By Peter McLaren

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