There is simply no room for error at the Red Bull Ring. Ducati is unbeaten in Austria, having begun its domination three years ago with iannone, before repeating itself with Dovizioso and then Lorenzo. Long straights, low speed acceleration and hard braking: the red bike's strong points, or at least until recently.
But Marquez and Honda have taken big steps in recent months and the Italian bike no longer holds the advantage, or at least not like it did. The Austrian GP was considered a shoo-in, but not any more.
Without forgetting that Jorge was the winner last year, Marquez finishing ahead of Dovizioso, who is the first to recall this. it is almost essential for Andrea to beat Marc if he wants to keep his title hopes alive, and this is one of his best opportunities.
“We can’t deny that the Red Bull Ring is an excellent track for us, this is clear from the results achieved there in the last few years, but as I’m always saying, each race has its own story to tell" comments Andrea.
“Last year Márquez finished ahead of me, so I’m sure that this year he will again be competitive. The most important thing is to focus on ourselves and maintain the feeling we found at Brno, both during the weekend and during the test, which was very positive. We’re going to try everything we can again, and for sure we’re not going to give up."
Petrucci: "a podium to keep hopes alive, but we're not the favourites"
While the Ducati has always flown in Austria, the same can't be said for Danilo Petrucci. The Italian has never shone at the Red Bull Ring and needs to turn things around after the disappointing Brno round. During Monday's test he focus on this and the new fairing should help him along the straight, despite his body size.
"I can’t wait to get back on the bike again in Austria after the disappointment of Brno. It’s going to be a race in which on paper we should be able to fight for a podium place to keep our hopes alive, but I believe that the forces are pretty evenly balanced and we don’t start as favourites as in previous years. We’ll see how things are already on Friday. I had some excellent sensations during Monday’s test and I want to maintain this feeling in the next race weekend.”