What is happening to Ducati? The performance of the red bikes at Barcelona can be defined only one way: disappointing. The more than 40 seconds suffered by Dovizioso at the finish line are a reflection of problems that must be solved soon.
The number 1 suspect is the rubber, but the troubles with the Michelins seem to be connected to the characteristics of the Desmosedici rather than the French tyres. Ducati doesn't always seem to be able to adapt to the Michelin Man's tyres and stresses them more than the rivals do. If it is true that everyone had problems with duration, on the various GP bikes (16, 15 and 14) those problems were accentuated.
Dovizioso has other doubts as well.
“It was a bad race - he admits - but we still don't know for sure what happened to the rear tyre. Our engineers and the Michelin engineers are checking because the tyre pressure did not increase during the race, as normally occurs. Already in the warm-up lap I had realised that something was strange, but I didn't have any other tyres left to change it.”
The problem affected his performance.
“There was something strange. For about ten laps I gritted my teeth, but I had no grip - he continues - Only a problem can justify that kind of drop in performance. I'm not blaming anyone. The quality of the tyres has improved. We'll wait to find out all the details.”
The rider from Forlì also battled with Danilo Petrucci who, however, had to give up to Bautista as well in the finale.
“It was a great race until five laps from the end when I managed to overtake Dovizioso - he says - I was calm throughout the entire race to conserve the rear tyre and I thought that I'd be able to make a play for seventh place with him. Then I felt that the tyre was gone, almost suddenly, and it was quite risky. I don't know what the problem was, maybe it depends on our setup, since the tyre we used is the same as Valentino, Marquez and Pedrosa's.”
Things went worse for Scott Redding, who even finished outside of the points zone.
“It's really difficult to explain what happened - he says - I don't know what caused such high wear on the tyre. We did well all weekend but in the race it was hard to ride after a few laps. The temperature is probably also to blame, since it was very hot today. To be honest, I expected much more. We need to work hard because all the Ducatis struggled, whereas I see that the other manufacturers did well. I tried to adjust my riding style during the race to adapt to the tyre. I did everything I could, but there was nothing that could change things.”