Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali has sent out a resounding message to Aruba.it Racing Ducati to “become the king of SBK” with the launch of the new V4 R ahead of the 2019 World Superbike championship.

Domenicali was present at the Aruba.it Racing Ducati launch as Chaz Davies and Alvaro Bautista helped reveal the team’s 2019 livery on the new Superbike.

The switch from V-twin to V4 engine configuration has signalled Ducati’s move to bring its World Superbike efforts closer to its MotoGP division, led by technical chief Gigi Dall’Igna, which Domenicali feels will have mutual benefits for both and provides a fresh start for the Italian squad in World Superbikes.

“This year we will truly witness a historic turning-point,” Domenicali said. “Racing is an inseparable part of Ducati, just think of the many examples in which the technology and know-how developed on the track have then been applied to production models.

“The Panigale V4 is a perfect example of this philosophy: it’s the first Ducati production bike to be fitted with a four-cylinder engine and equipped with technology coming from MotoGP.”

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With a reported global sales record achieved in the Superbike market following the launch of the road verison of the V4, Domenicali is eager to see similar success achieved on the track this season.

“In just 12 months it has become the new benchmark for style, technology and performance, with more than 6,100 units delivered across the globe, and it has allowed us – for the first time ever in company history – to achieve a global sales record in the superbike market segment,” he said.

“Now we also want to take it to the top on the track, its natural habitat, by making it become the king of SBK in the 1000cc R version.”

Four Ducatis will line up on the 2019 WorldSBK grid; the factory duo of Davies and Bautista plus Barni Racing’s Michael Ruben Rinaldi and Team Go Eleven’s Eugene Laverty.

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