The Pramac team colours are getting to be a bit tight for Jorge Martin, who still hasn't digested Ducati's decision to team up Enea Bastianini with Francesco Bagnaia. The Madrid native dreams of a future as a factory rider and recently reiterated that he is "open to any option" that could allow him to achieve his goal next year. Including Yamaha, repeatedly linked to the Spaniard's name, as the number one suspect for the replacement of Franco Morbidelli.
A scenario that was commented on by the sporting director of the Borgo Panigale manufacturer, Paolo Ciabatti, when asked by MotoGP.com to clarify Martin's 2024 season: “He has an option in the contract, we would like him to stay with Ducati. He's one of the fastest young riders, and at the moment it doesn't look like Yamaha has the bike to win the Championship – Ciabatti commented - I'm sorry to say, but this is what it looks like at the moment. We don't know about next year but at the moment he's on a winning bike and I think he'd like to stay because he likes to win.”
After his win in the Le Mans Sprint race, moreover, the Spanish driver took second place in the French GP, moving up to fourth place in the world standings, only fourteen points behind the leader Francesco Bagnaia. A very different situation from the one in which Fabio Quartararo and his team mate Franco Morbidelli find themselves, respectively ninth and thirteenth in the championship, before the round at Mugello.
The Borgo Panigale manufacturer therefore hopes to keep its rider roster unchanged for 2024, but Enea Bastianini's injury in the first round at Portimao, which hasn't yet allowed the Rimini rider to return to action, seems to be giving some more headaches for Ducati.
“Honestly, we didn't make any decision for the future. Unfortunately, Enea has been out for few races so obviously, we'd like to keep all the riders with us – said Ciabatti – You know that the Gresini and VR46 riders are currently contracted to the team. So the contract with Pecco, Enea, Johann and Jorge. In principle we’re happy with all of them, it's a bit too early for us to say, regarding the problem with Enea and the crash, it’s obviously delaying everything.”
It's hard to imagine that the Bologna manufacturer would think of replacing Bastianini in the factory team after just one season in Red, but maybe that's exactly what Jorge Martin is hoping for.