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SBK, Michael van der Mark in Ducati's sights

The Dutch rider is among the candidates to ride alongside Chaz Davies in 2017

Michael van der Mark in Ducati's sights

Ducati, having rushed to sign up Jorge Lorenzo in MotoGP, is taking its time when it comes to Superbike.
Having secured Chaz Davies' signature, the guys in Borgo Panigale are now considering the second rider. The place of Davide Giugliano, who has failed to give a consistent performance, despite his undeniable speed, also confirmed by his recent third place finish in Race 2 at Misano, is so unsure that the Roman rider is looking around.

But who could replace him?
The level in Superbike, in recent times, has left a lot to be desired, so much so that many second-level MotoGP riders are saying they'd be willing to embark on an adventure in the production-derived series.

But there are some solid riders in SBK and one of them is 24-year old Michael van der Mark.
<We've heard that he'd like to come to us - states Paolo Ciabatti - we believe that he is the most interesting of the young riders>.

Honda also thinks so, and is so worried about Ducati stealing him away that it is trying to see if it can find him a place in the reigning class, in one of its teams that, rumour has it, could be team Marc VDS, currently competing with Jack Miller and Tito Rabat and, considering Jack has a three-year contract, it could be the Spaniard who's forced into moving.

<We won't take a decistion until after Laguna Seca>, conferms Ciabatti and Davide Tardozzi confirms this <in the recent past, Superbike riders were decided on in September, so…>.

Michael van der Mark is not the only candidate for the Panigale though, even if he's the most likely. Confirmation is expected at Assen of Aleix Espargarò's move to the second Aprilia RS-GP (the other will be in the hands of Sam Lowes), which means that both Alvaro Bautista and Stefan Bradl are still on the market.

The first is a possible candidate for one of the two Spanish Ducati teams, Avintia and Aspar, while the German has recently shown interest in the Superbike championship.

Translated by Heather Watson

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