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MotoGP Catalan GP

Bezzecchi "not upset" to fall out of factory Ducati MotoGP seat frame

Three-time MotoGP race winner Marco Bezzecchi says he isn’t upset at being overlooked for a factory seat at Ducati next year.

Marco Bezzecchi, VR46 Racing Team

VR46 rider Bezzecchi was an outside contender for the title during his breakthrough 2023 campaign, where he eventually finished third in the standings to champion Francesco Bagnaia and second-placed Jorge Martin after scoring victories in Argentina, France and India.

But the Italian’s results have nosedived since he switched to last year’s GP23 bike, with the opening six rounds of the season yielding only a single podium finish - third place at Jerez.

This has allowed Martin and new Gresini rider Marc Marquez to emerge as the frontrunners to partner Francesco Bagnaia at the factory Ducati team in 2025, when Enea Bastianini’s two-year contract with the marque runs out.

While Bezzecchi admits his form in 2023 would have made him a worthy contender for the seat currently occupied by Bastianini, he conceded that Martin and Marquez are simply doing a better job than him at the moment and hence are being favoured by Ducati.

“I'm not upset because at the moment they deserve this more, so it's normal,” he said at Barcelona.

“Of course, I showed good things last year so I think I also deserve a factory seat. But at the moment it's normal that they look at them, so I don't blame anyone.

“For the moment my target is just to come back very strong. With this, if I achieve this then I will have more possibility to look around to try to have a factory seat which is the target of every MotoGP rider.

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“Martin, first of all, but also Marc and Bastianini, they deserve this more at the moment.”

Bezzecchi stressed that while he does dream of having a factory contract, Ducati’s edge over the competition means he has to consider whether it makes more sense to continue on a satellite bike with the Italian marque.

“I have the ambition to be in a factory team, to become a factory rider but I also want to be competitive to have good races,” he said.

“So if I have to leave my team right now to go in a less competitive package I don't know, because Ducati fortunately is very competitive anyway if it's not a factory bike.

“I want to see what possibility I will have, I will have to think about it. We will see.”

Bezzecchi sits a distant 10th in the championship after last weekend’s Catalan GP, having accumulated only 42 points from the opening six race weekends.

At this stage in 2023, he was the closest rival to eventual champion Bagnaia in the championship, with a tally of 110 points compared to 131 for his more experienced countryman.

While the slump in form could at least partly be explained by the jump Ducati has made with its updated MotoGP contender raced by the likes of Bagnaia and Martin, Bezzecchi has also scored 20 fewer points than team-mate Fabio di Giannantonio so far in 2024, suggesting that his lack of results are down to his own troubles to a great degree.

Marco Bezzecchi, VR46 Racing Team

Marco Bezzecchi, VR46 Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Speaking about his problems, the 25-year-old revealed a key area where he has been lagging behind in 2024, as he reiterated that he is still struggling to adapt to the GP23.

“Diggia is very good on releasing the brake, which is the part where I'm struggling the most unfortunately,” he explained.

“I tried many, many times to release the brake as he did, but also as Marc and all the GP23 riders do many times.

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“But when I do this I always have a lot of understeer and the bike doesn't turn so well, so I keep pulling on the handlebar to try to make the bike turn and I destroy the front tyre.

“We have to find a way to make the bike turn better and try to avoid my way to force the bike to turn.”

Watch: Time for the Italian GP in MotoGP

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