Enea Bastianini grilled about being replaced by Marc Marquez or Jorge Martin

Could Enea Bastianini lose his Ducati seat in 2025 to Marc Marquez or Jorge Martin?

Enea Bastianini, Valencia MotoGP test 28 November
Enea Bastianini, Valencia MotoGP test 28 November

Enea Bastianini will begin the 2024 MotoGP season already battling to cling onto his factory Ducati seat.

Marc Marquez and Jorge Martin are two obvious contenders to inherit his position for 2025, when a mass rider merry-go-round may have completed.

Bastianini, whose debut season in red was ruined by injury, knows he must start quickly this year to fend off the intense pressure.

Asked if he was more wary of Marquez or Martin taking his ‘25 bike, he told Marca: “I think it's difficult to talk about this now.

“Let's see, I hope it will be Enea Bastianini, but it's a little early…”

Pramac’s Martin insisted last year that he had a contractual clause stating he must be promoted to the factory Ducati team in 2024 if he won the 2023 championship.

He even took a spare set of leathers to Valencia, to potentially use at the postseason test, although ultimately he narrowly missed out on the title and his step up.

Bastianini’s reaction to this was: “Actually... I don't know. I knew little or nothing.

“I heard about this many times, but, officially, no one told me anything and I don't think it was like that, but that doesn't matter to me.

“What matters to me is that I am on this team because it has always been complicated for me.

“I was at Avintia, at Gresini and at Ducati, it was all new.

“Therefore, for me it is important to do another year with the same team.”

Marquez riding a Ducati has been tipped by fellow riders from the Italian manufacturer to join the title battle this year.

“All Ducati riders are dangerous,” Bastianini said.

“I think they are the most dangerous of all, because all the Ducati teams have bikes to fight for the title, but we also have to see the tests because I think KTM has a rider like Brad Binder, Aprilia have Maverick Vinales or Aleix Espargaro, who were very fast in the Valencia test.

“You have to see Honda and what it does because Luca Marini was also fast in Valencia.

“The favourite is surely Pecco…”

A shoulder injury in the first sprint race in Portimao last year gave Bastianini a nightmare start to his factory career.

But he finally gathered momentum after more injury troubles in the final part of the year, and won the Singapore MotoGP to offer a reminder of his talent.

He said about 2024: “It is surely a year in which I want to rescue myself, in the sense that 2023 was a somewhat complicated year, but I am sure that this year will be different.

“We'll see how it is, but I'm calmer because, also, physically I'm fine and I'm prepared.”

He insisted that he has not lost belief in himself.

“No, I am confident,” he insisted.

“I have a good team behind me, who has also helped me a lot on this journey that I have done throughout last year.

“I think the season finale I did wasn't bad. I was at a good level, but I'm sure we will raise the bar.”

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