Casey Stoner is testing an early prototype of next year's Desmosedici GP9 in Catalunya. With one day of testing left to go, the World Champion is already outpacing the new pneumatic valve-equipped Honda RC212V. That, however, isn't the biggest news. It looks like Ducati is ditching its traditional steel trellis frame for what could be a carbon fiber monocoque.
Evidenced by the lack of any visual frame whatsoever, it's clear that
the GP9 in these photos is running some sort of alternative frame
design. That it is carbon fiber comes from team insiders, while the
monocoque design is strongly hinted at by the lack of large frame
spars. We'll need to see under the bike's skin, or at least a close-up
of the headstock, to know for sure.
A timeframe for the unlikely trickle down to production bikes of this
unconfirmed technology is nebulous at best, but this could indicate the
next wave of development in MotoGP design.
via MCN and MotoGP.com