Five minutes with Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso, moments after his runner-up finish in the season-opening Qatar MotoGP race.

The Italian star led during the early stages of the race and secured second place after repelling a last turn attack from Honda's Marc Marquez.

Dovi crossed the finish line 2.019s from Yamaha race winner and reigning champion Jorge Lorenzo...
Congratulations Andrea. Did you expect to be that strong? You've had quite a quiet pre-season, but have seemed confident at the same time?

Andrea Dovizioso:
Yes, we worked in the right way during testing and this is the confirmation. Until you make the result you don't have the confirmation, but I knew we worked in the right way and I'm so happy about that.

During the race weekend the feeling improved. Not a crazy lap time, but I saw the competitors were not so fast. I thought it was the key. I had the speed and the lap time came easy to me. I think we worked in the right way and especially I'm so happy because during the race I understood something really important; how to manage the tyre, especially the front, and now we can work for the future.
You were the only one of the top four using the soft front tyre, so many people expected you to fade...

Andrea Dovizioso:
Fortunately, we never had a problem with the front tyre. In the test and during the this weekend. So it was not a question mark. It was the rear that dropped a lot. A lot. But I think this is because of the electronics, not the tyre. Because we don't have electronics on maximum angle we slide more and spin more. Everybody. So compared to the past, the tyre has to work more during the race.
When did the tyre start to drop?

Andrea Dovizioso:
The first drop, but it wasn't so big, was after ten laps. But the last five laps did a bad drop. On entry to the corners especially it was difficult to manage.
This was also your first real chance to study the other bikes...

Andrea Dovizioso:
I'm happy to see - okay Lorenzo won, but I saw him struggling. So that is nice! And also Marc, when he overtook me [on lap 19 of 22], he was fast but didn't have everything positive and that's why I was able to fight with him.
Did you expect that move from Marc at the last corner?

Andrea Dovizioso:
Yes, 100%! [laughs] Easy!
You must be looking forward to the next rounds now...

Andrea Dovizioso:
Yes of course. But it's too early to understand, because everything can change at each track. Especially Austin and Argentina are completely different. So we have to wait to understand our potential more, but I think we have really good pace with the new Desmosedici...



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