With just three races to go until the end of this championship, some still don’t know what will become of their future. And one of those is Andrea Dovizioso who, in Austria, had announced his divorce with Ducati at the end of the season in August. A risky move because the rider from Forlì had no alternative at that moment.
It was a step in the dark, because all the bikes (or almost all) were already practically taken and, as the months went by, the situation didn’t improve.
To be honest, the only alternative he has next year in the MotoGP is with Aprilia, if Iannone fails to get acquitted by the CAS. There were contacts between Dovi and Noale, but the negotiations never took off, partly because the move would have been huge, and partly because the project does not completely convince him.
So, the alternative is to accept the role as test rider, maybe with some wild cards, so as not to lose the habit of racing, assuming that they’re reintroduced next year.
At the moment, the most likely option for Andrea is with Yamaha.
In Aragon, project manager Takahiro Sumi stated that their intention is to strengthen the European test team in 2021. A project that should have already started this year, but was stopped by the coronavirus pandemic.
In fact, they took on Jorge Lorenzo who then remained at a standstill. Two days of testing in Sepang at the beginning of the season and two more in Portimao just recently. But it was the Portuguese test that raised doubts about the rider from Mallorca’s desire to continue in this role, because his speed was anything but exciting. Nine months away from the bikes made a difference, so much so that Valentino Rossi reprimanded him: “To be a test rider at your best, you can’t stand still for so long, you have to train on the bike.”
It all depends on the desire that Lorenzo has to commit himself and, if his isn’t enough, Andrea Dovizioso would be a perfect alternative.
Dovi is a rider with great sensitivity. He’s fast, he knows every Ducati secret and, above all, he doesn’t want to stop. 2021 for him would be a year in which he could remain in the game, not lose confidence with the MotoGP and, why not, maybe aim for that M1 that the Doctor could be setting free in 2022.
The other alternative, at least on paper, would be with Honda. But Alberto Puig doesn’t seem to be a big Dovi fan at the moment.
An agreement with Yamaha would seem the best solution for both parties.
Even Valentino had given him his blessing a few weeks ago: “ I would sign up now to have Dovizioso as a Yamaha tester”.
Time will tell.