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GP Week : Issue 197
MOTOGP >>> PrEViEW entry List – 2014 MotoGP World Championship (F – Factory Class F2 – Factory O – Open) 4 Andrea Dovizioso I Ducati Corse Ducati F2 5 Colin Edwards USA NGM Forward Forward-Yamaha O 7 Hiroshi Aoyama J Drive M7 Aspar Honda O 8 Hector Barbera E Avintia Racing FTR-Kawasaki O 9 Danilo Petrucci I IodaRacing Project ART-Aprilia O 6 Stefan Bradl D LCR Honda F 10 Alvaro Bautista E Go & Fun Gresini Honda F 17 Karel Abraham Cz Cardion AB Racing Honda O 23 Broc Parkes Aus Paul Bird Motorsport PBM Aprilia O 26 Dani Pedrosa E Repsol HRC Honda F 29 Andrea Iannone I Pramac Ducati F2 35 Cal Crutchlow GB Ducati Corse Ducati F2 38 Bradley Smith GB Monster Tech 3 Yamaha F 41 Aleix Espargaro E NGM Forward Forward-Yamaha O 44 Pol Espargaro E Monster Tech 3 Yamaha F 45 Scott Redding GB Go & Fun Gresini Honda O 46 Valentino Rossi I Movistar Yamaha Yamaha F 63 Mike Di Meglio F Avintia Blusens Racing FTR-Kawasaki O 68 Yonny Hernandez Col Pramac Ducati F2 69 Nicky Hayden USA Drive M7 AsparHonda O 70 Michael Laverty GB Paul Bird Motorsport PBM Aprilia O 93 Marc Marquez E Repsol HRC Honda F 99 Jorge Lorenzo E Movistar Yamaha Yamaha F Marelli ECU and software, the use of which is mandatory in Open class, lagged far behind the equivalent hardware and code in use by the factory teams. Or, it did, until there was a sudden upgrade in the performance of the unit late in pre-season testing – at which point, Dall’Igna had ordered the spec of his bikes be changed for testing. Ducatis ran at Sepang in Open spec, the riders and engineers liked what they found and shortly thereafter, Dall’Igna announced Ducati Corse was changing the classification for its entries from Factory to Open. One might come to the conclusion that someone had come to an ‘arrangement’ with Magneti Marelli to use Ducati’s own code. Honda’s Livio Suppo looked to be one who was thinking along those lines. “As Honda, the position is clear,” he said. “We understand that Ducati is behind, so they are trying everything to recover. For sure, the Open class rules allow them to work on the engine during the season; this is important for them, I understand. On the other side, we are not so happy that – just a few days before the announcement of Ducati going Open – there was the introduction from Magneti Marelli of new software, which is much more complicated that the standard one of the Open class. I think this is something we need to speak about.” Any suggestion that such actions occurred was clearly put down by Dall’Igna. “We asked, like everyone, for some modification on the software, some improvement, based on the experience,” he said at the Ducati Corse launch in Germany. “We ask [sic] to Dorna, and we ask for improvement to traction control and anti-wheelie.” Some may be upset that Ducati has not followed the spirit of the regulations, or that the sport’s status quo will be upset. But Dall’Igna is not being paid for his spirit, he is being paid for results, and the current status quo is that Honda and Yamaha will win everything and everyone else will not. Dorna and the FIM have responded to the news by creating a new, third classification called ‘Factory 2’. This allows bikes’ race fuel allocation drop from 24 to 22.5 litres and engine inventory reduced from 12 to nine. For the moment, Ducatis will be the only bikes in the class, and more restrictions may be placed on the bikes if they start scoring podiums or, dare to dream, wins. And, should the red bikes prove capable of staying within arms’ length of the Factory bikes, which late in the race could be severely into fuel-saving mode ... and Dovi and Cal have fuel and tyre grip to burn ... does anyone NOT want to see what happens next? 27 GPWEEK.com // 27 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: