Ducati GP11: Rossi’s new ride

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These are the first official images of the Ducati GP11, the bike that Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden will ride in MotoGP this year. As you can see, there’s not a big departure here from the GP10, at least visually. The large wings on the fairing, first developed last year, are thought to create a vortex that aids in cooling by aggressively sucking air out of the fairing vents. It appears that the Desmosedici GP11 retains the semi-frameless, carbon monocoque design you can see in the picture below. One surprise, to us at least, is how small a presence AMG has after all the fanfare surrounding the announcement of their sponsorship.

Update: two videos, including interview with Hayden and Rossi.

Update 2: technical details from Filippo Preziosi.

As you can see in this picture of the Desmosedici GP9, the semi-frameless design incorporates the V4 engine, with carbon monocoque sections in place to connect suspension components, bodywork, the airbox and seat. The swingarm bolts directly to the engine.

Another change from last year is the inclusion of asymmetric fairing vents. As you can see in the above photos, the bike’s left fairing incorporates three near-vertical vents, while the right has only two in the same location, which also appear to be swoopier, like the gills of a shark, a Ferrari F1 car or that other fast bike with asymmetric, shark-like vents, the BMW S1000RR. These have likely been spec’d to optimize airflow through slightly different components on each side, boosting aerodynamic efficiency, cooling or fuel consumption.

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“The bike we see here at Madonna di Campiglio is the GP11 ‘step 0,’ as it represents the initial level from which we plan to evolve,” describes Filippo Preziosi, General Director of Ducati Corse. “The principal characteristics are the evolution of the motor and of the throttle body thought to obtain, fundamentally, a flatter and more useable power curve. As for the chassis, the aerodynamics are completely new, with the goal of improving top speed, reducing consumption, and also reducing front lift as much as possible. Other aspects we’re working on for the Malaysia tests in February are the new frame, which has already undergone various tests of rigidity and flex—for torsion and under braking—a swingarm with different rigidity characteristics, and a fork that combines the 2011 hydraulics with the 42mm tubes, instead of 48. As for the electronics, we’re working on wheelie control and traction control. These are all solutions that we’ll try out next week at Jerez with three days of testing and two development teams—one for Franco Battaini and one for Vittoriano Guareschi—and that Valentino and Nicky will then try in Malaysia. We know that Valentino isn’t at 100%, and Sepang is a very ‘physical’ track, so we’ll try to optimize his sessions and to use his time on the track in a ‘surgical’ way in order to have his feedback. Many tests will also be entrusted to Nicky Hayden, who will be able to ride normally. We’re working hard, but the atmosphere at Ducati is really nice, very electric and positive, and we can’t wait to get back on the track.”

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More information as we get it.

  • http://www.postpixel.com.au mugget

    Thanks for the info on the wings. And here I was thinking that they’re trying to keep the front wheel down (well that’s what the commentators were saying last year).

    Fluro yellow and red is still taking some getting used to.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Think of them like the winglets on the MotoCzysz E1pc, they do similar jobs.

  • tomwito

    GP comes full circle. Look how round the fairing is, like the original designs on the first faired GP bikes. Reminds me of a SpongeBob character.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      Actually, the profile stuck me as a eerily familiar.

  • Michael

    Lorenzo – you’re Effed!

  • stempere

    At ~0:53 in the video some japanese can be seen on Rossi’s bike, something directed at Yamaha maybe…
    Can anyone read that?

    • stempere
      • Turf

        According to a random girl who speaks japanese on twitter it is Japanese and says ‘Rossifumi Ganbatte’ which was a saying for him a yami, essentially meaning ‘Go Rossi!’ or ‘Come on Rossi!’ I love the internets.

        • stempere

          I was hoping for something a bit more fun…

  • Penguin

    Is it just me or does the rounder nose profile remind anyone of the 70′s era GP bikes? Or maybe it’s a trick of the light. It’s kind of strange looking but not in a completely un-likeable way – Like the S1000RR in more ways than one then I guess.

  • JonB

    Am I the only one who doesn’t like the aesthetics of the bike and their team leathers?

  • cookey

    Yes JonB you are the only one. I guess you’d prefer a sloop.

    • http://greatjoballweek.blogspot.com/ Case

      He’s not the only one. He’s got his grandfather too. HONK!

      And also me: I don’t like the leathers and don’t much care for the cosmetics of the bike either. The photos are a bit washed out so maybe it looks better on TV? I remember there was a lot of huff and puff about the color of the bikes in an old HFL post. Apparently the bikes look more orange in person so that they photograph red? I’m too lazy to look it up.

      • Turf

        it’s true, they do it with the Ferrari F1 cars as well.

        • Michael

          That red they use (Duc/Ferrari) is Marlboro red. the press photos are indeed washed out. I got to a lot of motogp and F1 races throughout the year and when you see them in person, my got they’re beautiful. They pop a lot more. If you look at photos from qatar under the lights, you get a get a good sense of the paint. They’re really metallic too. you can see here http://www.flickr.com/photos/tiziana80/4514918256/

  • Deltablues

    Gonna take a while to get used to all that mustard and ketchup, but I have to admit the Ducati looks like a purpose built weapon. Brutal but beautiful. This is going to be a great season. I think Stoner will be first, Rossi second, Lorenzo third. Really anticipating how Stoner does on the Honda after riding the beastly Ducati for several seasons.

    • Michael

      That’s a pretty good thought to the lineup. Don’t count out dovi or pedrosa. There’s a lot of possibilities.

      Where do people think Speis will wind up? I’m thinking he might sneak into three or four. He has exceptional race craft and focus. on the factory M1, he’s going to rock.

      • Deltablues

        Spies is the Wild Card…I think he will be on the podium a lot this year.

  • RT Moto

    I like it! I can’t wait to see it in person. I’m sure it will sound just as evil as the GP10.

  • BuellDoc

    When I think Italian I see beautiful women,Ferrari and the 916. Let this go away with the 999. I would rather give up 1 mph on the top end to see a WSB form on the front row!

  • BuellDoc

    What is the coin in front all about?

  • gregorbean

    I too am surprised at the tiny AMG presence and logo locations. I’ve wondered before if teams have a pricing chart type deal for different sizes and locations on bikes, ie. TIM pays $10 million for their logos in prime locations whereas Enel pays $6 million for it’s locations and AMG pays $2 million, etc. (I realize those numbers are way off, they’re just for example).

  • Eddie

    48–>42mm is a big change on the forks. Helps aero and means for more flex. Also there is a suspicious seam in the swingarm spar. Lots of work on tuning flex in the suspension components I imagine…