Ducati's 2022 MotoGP bike "already raceable" after first test

Francesco Bagnaia says the 2022 Ducati MotoGP bike "was already raceable" following his first test on the latest prototype in November at Jerez.

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

The 2021 MotoGP championship runner-up won four races last season and only missed the title by 26 points after a strong second part to the campaign.

Ducati won more races than any other manufacturer in 2021, with Bagnaia (4), Jack Miller (2) and Pramac rookie Jorge Martin (1) tallying up seven between them – securing the Italian marque the constructors’ crown for the second year in a row.

Bagnaia said at the end of 2021 that the Ducati was a “perfect” bike, but the manufacturer had improved on that with its 2022 prototype at the post-season Jerez test, which Bagnaia topped outright.

The Italian says Ducati has taken onboard the feedback all riders have given for the 2022 bike, and believes it was ready to race at Jerez.

“I think that Ducati has heard a lot from the riders, to me, to Jack, to [Johann] Zarco, to Martin, because I was asking for an easier bike because everyone is saying the Ducati is the easiest bike, the fastest bike, the better bike to use,” Bagnaia told Autosport’s Tank Slappers podcast.

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“But it’s something that I can’t understand because I’m not saying another bike is the best because I didn’t try it. It’s very difficult to say something about the other bikes without trying it.

“But I was asking to have an easy bike to ride in a fast track with fast corners, because our bike is not so easy in that situation.

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“With the new fairing I started to feel a bit better, but [it] has also some weak points. I’m sure the engineers are working a lot on that thing.

“But at the test in Jerez, our time with the new bike was incredible because I did it with a full fuel tank and also with medium tyres. It was incredible and [as] was the new bike, and every time you start with a new bike you have to adapt on it.

“I started well, I worked a lot all the two days and in the second day it was already okay, it was already raceable. If the race was the day after, I was starting with that bike.

“Ducati engineers have done an incredible job with next year’s bike and I’m sure that for [testing in] Malaysia we will find some new surprises for sure.”

Pre-season testing for the 2022 campaign is due to kick off in Malaysia on 5 February for two official days, before three more days take place at the Mandalika circuit in Indonesia the following week. 

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