Enea Bastianini fears it is 'impossible' to receive the latest GP22-spec Ducati in MotoGP next season, 'but after this race, we will check again!'

This race, at Misano on Sunday, saw the rookie charge to his second podium finish in as many events at the Italian track.

In September, he turned heads by taking his 2019-spec Avintia machine from twelfth on the grid to third, setting a race pace Ducati Corse general manager Gigi Dall’Igna felt was good enough to win had he qualified better.

After taking advantage of the Mir-Miller clash for his third top-six in a row at COTA, Bastianini returned to Misano with a first objective of qualifying higher up the order.

The weather had other ideas and the Italian was instead left to line-up in 16th place. If his podium hopes didn't already look bleak, Bastianini then dropped to 18th on the opening lap.


By lap 8 of 27 Bastianini was still no higher than where he had started, but over the next 15 laps he gained 13 places.

The Moto2 world champion's progress was helped by some mistakes ahead, but his raw speed was beyond doubt as he delivered a best race lap faster than all but Francesco Bagnaia to reel in world championship leader Fabio Quartararo on the final lap.

With Quartararo on the verge of title glory after Bagnaia's late mistake, some might have given the Monster Yamaha rider a wide berth. Not Bastianini. He dived inside the #20 with just a few corners remaining to snatch a remarkable third place.

All by a rider that had crashed three times on Saturday.


"It’s been a very difficult weekend for me, yesterday I destroyed three bikes in eight laps!" Bastianini smiled. "Today I wasn’t confident to arrive on the podium, but after some laps during the race I saw my pace and was really close to the first group with Marc and Pecco.

"The last ten laps I pushed a lot to recover and I saw Fabio very close to me in the last lap. The battle with Fabio was very strange because he had a battle for the title, but inside me I think only I want to arrive in the third place. I’m happy.

"I want to say thanks to my team because they did a very, very good job yesterday and also today. Also congratulations to Fabio because he was incredible during all the season."

Accidents for Bagnaia and factory team-mate Jack Miller, the only riders on the hard front tyre, meant Bastianini was the top Ducati, handing valuable points to the manufacturer in its battle with Yamaha for the constructors' crown.

"This race was really different with respect to Misano 1 because it was so cold. Also I think the medium on the front was a good choice," said Bastianini. "Pecco and also Jack put the hard on the front, but in the middle of the corner it's not good.

"I tried also in the test the hard front and I crashed two times. So we tried with the medium and it was the good choice today."

Having qualified in the top ten just once this season, it's not hard to predict where Bastianini sees the most room for improvement.

"I think qualifying because every time I start from 9 to 16, and this is not good for the race because I have to do a lot of overtakes," he said.

But looking further ahead to next season, it's no secret that Bastianini wants to be on the latest 2022-spec Desmosedici machinery, as he moves from Avintia to Gresini.

The problem is, he is currently due to get this year's 2021-spec factory bike.

"Next year I think I will have the 2021 bike, but with all the best material possible," he said. "I spoke also this weekend with all the guys at Ducati, but I think the 2022 is impossible to receive next year.

"But after this race, we will check again with Gigi and Davide and we go with Carletto [Pernat], my manager, to work!"

Bastianini starts the final two rounds of the MotoGP season holding 13th in the world championship and leading the rookie of the year contest by five points over race winner Jorge Martin, who has a GP21 Ducati at Pramac.

Fellow newcomer Luca Marini, Bastianini's team-mate, is 20th in the world championship. Marini, like Pramac riders Martin and Johann Zarco, is due to get GP22 machinery at VR46 team next season.