(Above) The 2011 Ducati Corse MotoGP team. (Below) Digitek instrumental panel on the Desmosedici GP11.
Ducati officially unveiled its race bikes that it will compete with in the 2011 MotoGP World Championship with riders Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden at the Wrooom ski/press meeting in Italy. Ducati claims that the new Desmosedici GP11 is the third evolution of the original bike that debuted in 2003.
“The 2011 season opens a sort of third phase for our MotoGP project,” said Claudio Domenicali, General Director of Ducati Motor Holding. “The first was with Loris Capirossi, who in just six races took the Desmosedici to its first win. The second brought the world championship crown, thanks to Casey Stoner, in 2007. The big news for 2011, which opens a third phase, is the arrival of Valentino Rossi on the team.”
“The bike we see here at Madonna di Campiglio is the GP11 ‘step 0,’ as it represents the initial level from which we plan to evolve,” continued Domenicali. “The principal characteristics are the evolution of the motor and of the throttle body thought to obtain, fundamentally, a flatter and more useable power curve. As for the chassis, the aerodynamics are completely new, with the goal of improving top speed, reducing consumption, and also reducing front lift as much as possible.”
“Other aspects we’re working on for the Malaysia tests in February are the new frame, which has already undergone various tests of rigidity and flex—for torsion and under braking—a swingarm with different rigidity characteristics, and a fork that combines the 2011 hydraulics with the 42mm tubes, instead of 48. As for the electronics, we’re working on wheelie control and traction control. These are all solutions that we’ll try out next week at Jerez with three days of testing and two development teams—one for Franco Battaini and one for Vittoriano Guareschi—and that Valentino and Nicky will then try in Malaysia.”
“We know that Valentino isn’t at 100%, and Sepang is a very ‘physical’ track, so we’ll try to optimize his sessions and to use his time on the track in a ‘surgical’ way in order to have his feedback. Many tests will also be entrusted to Nicky Hayden, who will be able to ride normally. We’re working hard, but the atmosphere at Ducati is really nice, very electric and positive, and we can’t wait to get back on the track.”