Davide Giugliano has remarked on his frustration and sadness at being forced out of his final race for Aruba.it Racing Ducati in Qatar by a shoulder injury as he looks set to exit World Superbikes.
The Italian rider has been plagued by a shoulder injury during the final few rounds of the 2016 campaign, sustained in a nasty crash in the wet race two at the Lausitzring, and the pain in his shoulder caused him to withdraw from the final race of the year.
Despite his disappointment at missing his last race of 2016, Giugliano has thanked the factory Ducati squad for their efforts over the past three years ahead of him being replaced by Marco Melandri in 2017.
“There couldn't have been a sadder way to say goodbye to the team and Ducati, but I carry many beautiful memories within me,” Giugliano said. “I think that both me as a rider and the bike grew a lot together in all these years.
"I learned many lessons, and it's been an intense journey because I believe that having me as a rider elicits a lot of emotions, for better and for worse.
“I want to give my special thanks to my crew, as they always worked until late night to give me the best tools to race. Also thanks to the whole team and Ducati, which have always made me feel appreciated and worked so hard. I wish them all the best.”
Despite missing out on a much sought after World Superbike win with Ducati, Giugliano ended 2016 seventh in the riders' championship with five rostrum results to his name.
Giugliano is strongly linked to a switch to the British Superbike championship, while Be Wiser Ducati team owner Paul Bird recently dismissed speculation the Italian may join as Shane Byrne's team-mate, but the Italian is likely to remain with Ducati in his switch to BSB.