Rossi speaks on Ducati departure

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In a rare moment of candor from a professional motorcycle racer, Valentino Rossi has commented on departing Ducati to return to Yamaha, via Twitter.

“It has been a real shame that we have not been able to be competitive with the Ducati, it would have given me great satisfaction, as well as to all the guys who have worked with me and who will be working right to the end. And it would have been great fun for all of our fans. I am sorry. But there are still 8 races to the end of the season, we are working to the maximum to make some great races. Ciao to everyone and see you at Indy. #ValeDucati”

via MotoMatters

  • Chris

    I can only imagine the lack of wins is what drove him to accept an offer.

    • Gene

      I think he would put up with lack of wins as long as there was forward progress toward winning, and there wasn’t any.

      I really get the feeling it was either Ducati doesn’t have the money to spend on development or they just plain couldn’t get their shit together.

      • Dave H

        I’m pretty sure Ducati definitely has money to spend on development. They simply seem to be ridiculously slow to respond to rider feedback, and they refuse to admit that the GP12 is a difficult piece of shit. So yes, they can’t get their shit together.

  • Gene

    Looks like Dovizioso gets his ride, so Crutchlow is SOL for a full factory bike. Ha. Justice, except I hope it doesn’t ruin Dovi’s career.

    • Coreyvwc

      I’m really happy that Cal is staying at tech3, it really is the best fit for him at this point. He’s a great rider and is far too young to squander the rest of his career at Ducati. There won’t be another Casey Stoner and no one is going to win on a Ducati unless some very drastic changes are made to there machine and direction. Dovi… I really hope he likes money a whole LOT more than podiums, because there won’t be any more next year.

  • T Diver

    Spies is going to the new factory BMW team.

  • Patrick from Astoria

    That’s about what can actually be said about this. They tried, it didn’t work, time to move on. I find no fault with Rossi doing what is in his own best self-interest; more interestingly, I get the feeling that the expressed disappointment is real, more than just face-saving or a way to objectively summarize the experience. He really wanted this to work, and it’s a shame that it didn’t.

  • mchale2020

    These are my thoughts towards the GP silly season:

    It’s pretty telling that Andrea Dovizioso is rumored to be in talks with Ducati about a possible contract, with part of the deal being that Duc-Audii will build him a competitive bike for next season while Rossi is leaving for Yamaha to ride under Jorge and possibly take a lot less money to get back on a sound bike. Even Stoner’s time at Ducati wasn’t exactly romantic, as he had to ride on the absolute brink to be successful. Up until this point, you can’t expect to be competitive with Ducati’s approach to GP. In seven years, look at the lap times at Laguna. We’ve seen about a 5-6 second drop in lap times among the faster riders and several tire providers reduced to one. God knows how much work that has taken to achieve and if a factory team isn’t willing to work like HRC or Yamaha in developing their machines, then Ducati’s results are about what you can expect, regardless of who rides the bike. I’m glad to see Rossi back with a team like Yamaha, it’s better for the sport and its a wake up call for Ducati’s GP program.

    Let’s not forget, up until this point Ducati would rather send a struggling factory rider to a psychologist than admit there is a problem with their machine.

    • Scott-jay

      ‘Tis a silly season.
      Going to Indy wearin’ a Repsol tee-shirt and rootin’ for Rossi & Hayden.
      All-the-while knowing the racin’ on dirt mile night before will be more exciting than road race show.

      • mchale2020

        I really hope Duc-Audi can get there act together and build a bike Hayden can rip on next season. His whole experience in GP probably wasn’t what he was expecting when he moved in with Repsol Honda a long time ago and it’s been a tough road for him ever since. He’s put the time in with Ducati, I think they owe it to him to get him in the fight with the YZR and RCV. Besides, it would be one way to recover from the PR disaster that is having the GOAT walk away from your team.

  • Tyler

    It would be hard for anyone to go from frequently being on the podium to being only back of the pack. He clearly wanted the partnership to work, but he is getting a bit old, and wants to make his last years count. The only sure way that can happen for him is at Yamaha.

    Rossi’s riding style has never been a good fit for the Ducati, either. The Ducati needs an aggressive rider who wants to slide the bike a lot; this is why Stoner could produce results with the bike. I imagine if you put Lorenzo on the Ducati, it would produce similar results.

    It should be good racing next year to see him and Lorenzo battling again. I’d also like to see Ducati doing much better next year…the Honda vs. Yamaha show needs a bit of a change.

    I’m still curious about what Spies is doing next year. His current year has been painful to watch.

  • damien

    It’s been tough to watch this partnership not do well. Probably the best decision for Rossi to be competitive in his last few years.

    I’m thinking the theory that Spies goes to BMW in WSBK with a return to GP the next year seems one of the more plausible scenarios.

    What about Alvaro at Gresini? Will he be replaced with an Italian rider?

  • AHA

    To be fair to Ducati, it’s a big ask. Yamaha & Honda are the top of the tree in terms of aggressive developers & Ducati have done better than the other factories. Where are Suzuki, Kawasaki, BMW, KTM etc? Besides Yamaha & Honda have had some lean years not that long ago ( and will again probably.)

  • Rick

    Look back at Ducati’s MotoGP results and you’ll see that 2007 was not only the last year their second rider won a race (Loris Capirossi, one victory, in the rain) it was the last time the number two guy podiumed more than once (Loris had four top three finishes). A year later, a talent like Marco Melandri has a best finish of fifth (once) on his way to 17th in the championship.

    Stoner’s results steadily declined during the four seasons he raced there. In his 2007 debut he won ten races, six in 2008, four in 2009, three in 2010. Whatever magic mojo he had with the Desmosedici wasn’t enough anymore, so he leaves for Repsol

    In all, it looks like a case study in the wisdom of using the other guy’s results as a sanity check and compass for your program’s direction.

    • Gene

      Speaking of Capirossi, Soup mentioned he tweeted about testing a MotoGP bike. One can only assume it’s Ducati. Boy, what I wouldn’t give to be a fly on the wall hearing the debrief after that ride. I bet I’d learn some serious Italian swear-words.

  • the_doctor

    Ducati, as much as I love them, has been going backwards since Stoners championship. Rossi had a chance to really develop the bike, but that proved impossible. It is quite surprising. If one of the greatest riders is unable to sort your bike out, odds are, it isnt sortable.

    That said, maybe Rossi just isnt competitive anymore. Sure, he has had 2 podiums, but it will take riding a Yamaha again to tell if he can still ride like he used to.

  • markbvt

    Stoner had some choice words for Rossi in this Sydney Morning Herald article:

  • Scott-jay

    Nice day steeped in five-years tradition at Indy MotoGP this year (one can hear the difference of Honda’s slick-quick shifting transmission).

    However, night-before Mile dirt-track racing was genuine exciting fun and close racing action! (plus, State Fair food!)