Danilo Petrucci says Ducati’s experimental parts made small but underwhelming changes to the GP19’s performance as he remains silent on the exact objective for the parts because “Gigi gets angry”.

The factory Ducati rider ended Friday practice comfortably inside the Q2 spots with fourth place on the combined times just fractionally off Jack Miller, also on the GP19, on a solid day for the Italian getting up to speed ahead of the 2019 MotoGP opener in Qatar.

Petrucci’s Ducati was once again fitted with a rear wheel cover and front wheel device (see main image), which were also trialled on his bike during the Qatar pre-season test two weeks ago, while team-mate Andrea Dovizioso was caught using the holeshot device during a practice start at the end of FP2.

Petrucci remained steadfast on any explanation behind the devices seen on his GP19 during Friday practice in Qatar but denied it was a tyre cooling device.

“We saw on television that [they said] it was for cooling down the rear tyre but it is not like this,” Petrucci said. “But I can’t tell you because Gigi [Dall'Igna] gets angry.

“There is also another part on the front and when I saw it I asked what is its purpose but unfortunately I cannot tell you as it is my contract. There are some small changes riding the bike but not as big as we expected.”

COTA MotoGP #2 - Last time in the saddle at COTA

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Petrucci’s main concerns on Friday practice focused on ensuring Ducati can manage its tyre life during a race run through its setup and race strategy.

“I think we are in a very, very important group fighting for that [top] position especially over one lap,” he said. “Everyone is getting close to the perfect setup and the key for the race is to start on the first two rows and try to remain there because there are many riders that want to stay in front.

“For the tyre the first 12 laps will be very important. You can stay there but then the last 10 laps will be critical.

“It is not easy to control the tyre and stay on top in MotoGP but we have to do this to fight for the podium.”



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