Dovizioso opens up on Ducati MotoGP exit and strained Dall'Igna relationship

Andrea Dovizioso has laid the blame for his exit from the factory Ducati MotoGP team in 2021 after eight years on his strained relationship with Ducati general manager Gigi Dall'Igna

Dovizioso opens up on Ducati MotoGP exit and strained Dall'Igna relationship

Dovizioso - who will take a sabbatical in 2021 - announced during last August's Austrian Grand Prix weekend that he would not be renewing his contract with Ducati beyond 2020, but remained coy on his motivation for this.

It was thought at the time Ducati and Dovizioso could not meet on financial terms on a new deal, but the 15-time MotoGP race winners says this is false and a deal was never tabled.

In an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport, Dovizioso has opened up on what led to his Ducati exit, pointing towards the breakdown in relationship between himself and Dall'Igna since the 2017 season.

"What is the relationship with Gigi? Zero," Dovizioso admitted.

"In the past years it was at 30%, then since Jorge Lorenzo arrived in 2017 - in arguing and going against each other - my team and I became a bit isolated.

"We no longer talked about the development of the bike, we no longer held meetings to develop it. But in Ducati there is potential to do so, because the competence and skill are very high.

"Of these eight years it's the only thing that makes me angry, because we could have done more.

"Gigi and I have not spoken calmly since 2017."

Dovizioso denies the decision not to go forward with him was a unanimous one amongst Ducati management, claiming: "These decisions come only from Gigi.

"There is talk of Ducati, but it is wrong because all the decisions are his. Like the choice of Lorenzo in 2017.

"At the beginning of 2016 there was the possibility of taking on [Marc] Marquez, but Gigi had already decided that he wanted Lorenzo."

Dovizioso suggests Dall'Igna's mind was made up when the pair clashed during a technical meeting in 2019 between the German and Austrian Grands Prix.

"Gigi stated that he understood that it was already over from the 2019 meeting between the Sachsenring and Austria," he adds.

"That was supposed to be a technical meeting, we had different ideas, there was friction and we wanted to meet with all the engineers.

"It started as a technical meeting but then ended as a confrontation between the two of us. Gigi felt attacked, beaten.

"I think at that moment he closed the doors, but he did it quietly and what he says confirms it.

"It was said that I wanted this and that. All lies. There was never an offer, there were no negotiations. I still did not know that they no longer wanted me.

"But what they said was the confirmation that for Dall'Igna it was already over after that 2019 meeting."

Dovizioso is also critical of the lack of transparency over a 2021 Ducati deal, saying more knowledge of his standing with the team would have made him "consider the possibility of KTM in a different way" having held discussions which came to naught with the Austrian marque.

He hasn't ruled out the possibility of standing in for the still-recovering Marquez at Honda in 2021, but declined to comment on the situation and would prefer to "see what they propose to me, if they will" before making any plans.

shares
comments
Why Suzuki's Brivio replacement must come from within

Previous article

Why Suzuki's Brivio replacement must come from within

Next article

Gresini MotoGP boss conscious and stable as COVID-19 fight continues

Gresini MotoGP boss conscious and stable as COVID-19 fight continues
Load comments

About this article

Series MotoGP
Drivers Andrea Dovizioso
Teams Ducati Team , AB Motoracing
Author Lewis Duncan
Where does Honda's new MotoGP signing sit ahead of its king's return? Plus

Where does Honda's new MotoGP signing sit ahead of its king's return?

Pol Espargaro’s first results as a Honda MotoGP rider may not appear special. But dig a little deeper and a clearer picture of his performance emerges. And, as Lewis Duncan writes, it’s cause for celebration at Honda with the return of Marc Marquez set to provide Espargaro with the reference he has been missing so far this year

MotoGP
Apr 12, 2021
The "pit bull" MotoGP rookie already drawing legendary comparisons Plus

The "pit bull" MotoGP rookie already drawing legendary comparisons

MotoGP’s 2021 rookie crop is one of the strongest in recent years, but one is already standing out. Jorge Martin’s Doha GP heroics have courted many to compare him to numerous MotoGP legends. Autosport spoke to Pramac boss Francesco Guidotti to find out why MotoGP’s latest Spanish star is already making such an impact

MotoGP
Apr 9, 2021
Why MotoGP's stewards must revisit Miller and Mir's Losail clash Plus

Why MotoGP's stewards must revisit Miller and Mir's Losail clash

Despite Suzuki’s decision not to appeal against Race Direction’s refusal to penalise Jack Miller following the incident with Joan Mir in Losail, something must be done to avoid a repeat of such an incident, which could have easily ended in tragedy

MotoGP
Apr 6, 2021
Has Yamaha banished its demons with its 2021 MotoGP bike? Plus

Has Yamaha banished its demons with its 2021 MotoGP bike?

Against the expected run of play at Qatar's Losail circuit, both Yamaha riders Maverick Vinales and Fabio Quartararo carved through a resolute Ducati defence to secure back-to-back MotoGP wins for the Japanese marque. After a difficult 2020, it appears that Yamaha has swaggered back into championship contention

MotoGP
Apr 5, 2021
Why MotoGP’s top gun looks more dangerous at the Doha GP Plus

Why MotoGP’s top gun looks more dangerous at the Doha GP

Lightning hasn't struck twice for Maverick Vinales since 2017 and his wayward form of recent years makes predicting how he'll fare each MotoGP race weekend tricky. But fresh from his Qatar GP win, Vinales looks like an even more dangerous prospect for the Doha GP following an intriguing Friday practice

MotoGP
Apr 3, 2021
Why MotoGP’s new Amazon series is long overdue Plus

Why MotoGP’s new Amazon series is long overdue

OPINION: MotoGP is getting its own version of Drive to Survive on Amazon Prime at some point in the near future. It was news welcomed by the grid’s leading riders. And following the impact DTS has had on Formula 1, MotoGP desperately needs the same boost.

MotoGP
Mar 31, 2021
Did the Qatar GP hint at Ducati’s true MotoGP leader? Plus

Did the Qatar GP hint at Ducati’s true MotoGP leader?

OPINION: Johann Zarco talked a big game pre-season, and is so far vindicating himself as a factory rider at Pramac after finishing the Qatar GP as top Ducati in second. And contrasting his and Jack Miller's weekends and their approaches, is Zarco emerging as Ducati's true MotoGP leader?

MotoGP
Mar 30, 2021
The key changes behind the latest 'return of the Mack' Plus

The key changes behind the latest 'return of the Mack'

Maverick Vinales’s authoritative victory at the MotoGP season opener came during a period of personal and professional change for the Yamaha rider. Can it be the springboard for a title challenge?

MotoGP
Mar 29, 2021