Ducati still plans private test despite Italy lockdown

The Ducati MotoGP team is planning to conduct a two-day private test in Valencia at the end of March despite the entirety of Italy being under coronavirus quarantine.

Ducati still plans private test despite Italy lockdown

After a lockdown on numerous provinces affecting 16 million people was put into force on Sunday, the Italian government has extended that to cover the entire country until at least April 3 to try and contain the spread of COVID-19 in the world’s worst-hit country outside of China. 

This has played havoc with the MotoGP calendar, which has undergone various shakeups in recent weeks as the virus situation has forced the first three races in Qatar, Thailand and America to be postponed.

The season is now officially due to start on April 19 in Argentina, as per an updated calendar issued by the FIM on Tuesday – although this now looks unlikely after Argentina banned all international sporting events just hours after the new schedule was announced.

Dorna Sports CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta has also not ruled out a replacement for the axed Qatar race taking place in the weeks prior to Argentina.

Despite the disruption, the manufacturers had intended to press on with their preparations for the 2020 campaign with KTM, Suzuki and Honda having organised a private test at Jerez on March 18-20.

However, this now looks in doubt after KTM – which was renting out the Jerez circuit for the test – elected against travelling owing to the current virus situation.

A brief statement from KTM read: “KTM's private MotoGP test in Jerez in mid-March has been cancelled due to the current situation.

“It is not justifiable to send personnel at this time - also in order not to further increase the [risk] within the company.

“We are of course monitoring the situation accordingly and are in exchange with our respective contacts. We have a responsibility to our personnel and must react flexibly to the current situation or to short-term changes.”

Yamaha is set to carry out a private test at Motegi at some point, while Motorsport.com has learned Ducati is planning to test in Valencia on March 30-31.

Test rider Michele Pirro - Ducati, Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki aren’t allowed to use race riders for private tests - is set to ride the GP20 at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit, although it is unclear how Ducati will be able to leave Italy at this time.

Italy’s lockdown decree does permit absolutely essential work travel, but flights between Spain and Italy have been suspended for the time being. 

Whether Ducati’s trucks and personnel would be allowed through France and into Spain by road also remains uncertain.

shares
comments
MotoGP could hold Qatar replacement race before Argentina
Previous article

MotoGP could hold Qatar replacement race before Argentina

Next article

MotoGP calendar changed again after Argentina is delayed

MotoGP calendar changed again after Argentina is delayed
The signs the old Marquez is really back to trouble his MotoGP rivals Prime

The signs the old Marquez is really back to trouble his MotoGP rivals

OPINION: Marc Marquez has completed the first three races of his MotoGP comeback from a fourth major operation on his right arm and has already achieved more points than Honda scored in his absence. While there is still some way to go before he is ready to win races, there have been plenty of signs to suggest that the old Marquez really is back

The talent-outweighing ambition that will kill Ducati’s 2022 MotoGP title hopes Prime

The talent-outweighing ambition that will kill Ducati’s 2022 MotoGP title hopes

OPINION: For the fourth time in 2022, Francesco Bagnaia has made a costly error while battling other riders. Crashing while chasing one point at the Japanese Grand Prix has lost him eight to a struggling Fabio Quartararo. With just four rounds remaining and a history of errors in high-pressure situations, Bagnaia and Ducati need a serious rethink to stop its best opportunity of a title in 15 years slipping away

MotoGP
Sep 26, 2022
The unique advantage Ducati must now use to win the 2022 MotoGP title Prime

The unique advantage Ducati must now use to win the 2022 MotoGP title

Ducati has littered the grid with eight strong motorcycles that has ensured it has had at least one rider stand on the podium at every grand prix in 2022. The drama of the Aragon Grand Prix has thrust Francesco Bagnaia well and truly into title contention with five races to go, and Ducati must now consider utilising a unique strength it has so far been reticent to embrace

MotoGP
Sep 19, 2022
How KTM failed one of its brightest MotoGP prospects Prime

How KTM failed one of its brightest MotoGP prospects

Reigning Moto2 champion Remy Gardner’s career has been derailed by KTM’s decision not to retain him at Tech3 for 2023. Amid difficult circumstances, Gardner hasn’t shamed himself. But KTM’s apparent reasoning for dropping him raises questions about its handling of its young riders and the unrealistic expectations placed on them

MotoGP
Sep 6, 2022
Why it won't just be Marquez's speed that saves Honda in MotoGP Prime

Why it won't just be Marquez's speed that saves Honda in MotoGP

OPINION: Honda is in the midst of a second winless season in the space of three years. The absence of the injured Marc Marquez has been a major contributing factor, but HRC’s inability to alter its own approach has seen it slide down the order. Marquez returned to the MotoGP paddock in Austria and provided a rallying cry Honda needed to hear.

MotoGP
Aug 22, 2022
The signs Quartararo’s 2022 MotoGP title is slipping away from him Prime

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 teammate, look set to conspire against the Yamaha rider.

MotoGP
Aug 8, 2022
Why Andrea Dovizioso is leaving MotoGP at the right time Prime

Why Andrea Dovizioso is leaving MotoGP 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 Alex Rins feels he deserves MotoGP's toughest challenge Prime

Why Alex Rins 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 Motorsport.com - he faces with his eyes wide open…

MotoGP
Jul 27, 2022