Ducati fears "dangerous precedent" set by Yamaha MotoGP engine ruling

Ducati fears a "dangerous" precedent has been set by the decision to penalise just Yamaha and not its MotoGP riders for racing illegal engines at the Spanish Grand Prix

Ducati fears "dangerous precedent" set by Yamaha MotoGP engine ruling

An FIM investigation into the use of non-homologated valves in the engines of Maverick Vinales, Valentino Rossi, Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli at the opening round at Jerez concluded on Thursday that Yamaha contravened the rules.

The sanction centred on Yamaha having not gained unanimous approval from the manufacturers' association to change the valves from the ones it had submitted with its sample engine design for homologation pre-season.

Yamaha was docked 50 constructors' points, amounting double that of what it scored for Quartararo's Spanish GP win, while both the works Yamaha and Petronas SRT squads were docked 20 and 37 teams' title points - the latter for points scored at the first Jerez race and the Styrian GP, where Morbidelli used his Spanish GP engine and finished 15th.

However, no points were deducted from either of Quartararo, Vinales or Morbidelli's riders' standings tally, meaning they remain within 25 points of championship leader Joan Mir.

The Japanese manufacturer blamed an "internal oversight" for it using the illegal parts, but insists there was no "malintent" in what it did as the valves it used from two suppliers were designed to the same specification and accepts the ruling.

But Ducati boss Paolo Ciabatti - who also accepts the decision - fears the FIM only punishing Yamaha could lead to manufacturers in the future contravening the rules and claiming a similar case of oversight to that of Yamaha.

"I think the FIM stewards thought it was Yamaha's mistake and made this decision, which we accept because no one will complain," Ciabatti told Sky Italy.

"It is a bit of a dangerous precedent, however, because the riders, [though] not their fault raced with bikes that were not regular.

"A precedent has been set that could be risky in the future, because you then enter into the area of mistakes made in good faith or involuntarily and other kinds of evaluations that could possibly create problems in the future in terms of regulations.

"But we said we would accept this decision, so we will not make any protest."

Suzuki boss Davide Brivio admits the situation is tricky, because a decision to punish the riders could "put a shadow over the championship" for whoever ultimately wins it.

"We respect the situation, it's a difficult situation," Brivio told MotoGP's world feed.

"Whatever you do under this circumstances, with what's happened, you would put a shadow over the championship.

"If you penalise the riders, then whoever is going to win - if it's not them - you might say: 'Ah that's because of the disqualification'.

"With this sentence it might put a shadow on their championship, because they scored a lot of points, heavy points, in the race where the engine, it looks like, was not regular.

"It's a difficult decision, from our side we respect the decision, we're happy to continue to fight on the track and I like the situation that the riders' situation remains like this, because we don't want any shadow.

"If we win or lose, we like to do it on track."

shares
comments
MotoGP releases provisional 20-race 2021 calendar
Previous article

MotoGP releases provisional 20-race 2021 calendar

Next article

Vinales to start MotoGP European GP from pitlane with extra engine

Vinales to start MotoGP European GP from pitlane with extra engine
The signs Quartararo’s 2022 MotoGP title is slipping away from him Plus

The signs Quartararo’s 2022 MotoGP title is slipping away from him

Prior to the summer break, the 2022 MotoGP title looked like it was Fabio Quartararo’s to lose. But a crash at Assen and the consequential penalty he had to serve last weekend at Silverstone stopped him from capitalising on a main rival’s injury woes, while a resurgence from another, plus the rise of a former team-mate, look set to conspire against the Yamaha rider

MotoGP
Aug 8, 2022
Why Marquez’s toughest MotoGP foe is stopping at the right time Plus

Why Marquez’s toughest MotoGP foe is stopping at the right time

On the eve of the British Grand Prix, Andrea Dovizioso announced that he will be retiring from MotoGP after September’s San Marino GP. The timing of his departure raised eyebrows, but his reasoning remains sensible and what has happened this year should not diminish a hard-built legacy

MotoGP
Aug 6, 2022
Why a Suzuki refugee feels he deserves MotoGP's toughest challenge Plus

Why a Suzuki refugee feels he deserves MotoGP's toughest challenge

Alex Rins’ MotoGP future was plunged into sudden doubt when Suzuki elected to quit the series at the end of 2022. Securing a deal with Honda to join LCR, he will now tread a path that many have fallen off from. But it was a move he felt his status deserved, and it’s a challenge – he tells Autosport - he faces with his eyes wide open…

MotoGP
Jul 27, 2022
How Formula 1 has driven MotoGP's changing nature Plus

How Formula 1 has driven MotoGP's changing nature

The hiring of technicians from Formula 1 has clearly contributed to a recent change in the MotoGP landscape, with the role of engineers gaining greater significance relative to the riders. Here's how this shift has come about

MotoGP
Jul 19, 2022
The revolution behind Aprilia's rise from MotoGP tail-ender to pack-leader Plus

The revolution behind Aprilia's rise from MotoGP tail-ender to pack-leader

Coinciding with the arrival of Massimo Rivola as head of its MotoGP division, Aprilia has undergone an internal revolution that has spurred it from occupying last place in the team standings to leading the table in the space of just two years. Those entrenched in the project reveal how the ex-Ferrari F1 chief has achieved the dramatic turnaround

MotoGP
Jul 15, 2022
The battle Yamaha's wayward son is fighting to be fast again in MotoGP Plus

The battle Yamaha's wayward son is fighting to be fast again in MotoGP

Franco Morbidelli was long overdue a promotion to factory machinery when it finally came late last year, having finished runner-up in the 2020 standings on an old Yamaha package. But since then the Italian has been a shadow of his former self as he toils to adapt to the 2022 M1, and recognises that he needs to change his style to be quick on it

MotoGP
Jul 13, 2022
Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era Plus

Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era

The once all-conquering Japanese manufacturers are going through a difficult period in MotoGP this season. With Suzuki quitting, Honda struggling to get near the podium and Yamaha only enjoying success courtesy of Fabio Quartararo, Japanese manufacturers have been left in the dust by their European counterparts. Key paddock figures explain why.

MotoGP
Jun 28, 2022
Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star? Plus

Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star?

Valentino Rossi’s protégés stole the show at Assen as Francesco Bagnaia stormed to victory to arrest a recent barren run. But it was the rider in second, on Bagnaia’s old bike, who had all eyes on him. Securing his and the VR46 team’s first MotoGP podium, Marco Bezzecchi has all the characteristics that made his mentor special

MotoGP
Jun 27, 2022