Motorcycle Racing News Wroom: Rossi & Hayden Talk 2012 MotoGP

Wroom: Rossi & Hayden Talk 2012 MotoGP

2012 Ducati Wrooom

When the second day of the Ducati Wrooom event at Madonna di Campiglio got underway Tuesday, the international press immediately got down to business asking Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden questions about the upcoming MotoGP Championship.

Both MotoGP riders discussed the Ducati GP12, which will run a 1000cc motor, and what they expect in 2012 MotoGP.

Rossi, who finished seventh during his debut year with Ducati in 2011, reported how excited about the revamped motorcycle for 2012.

Valentino Rossi (Ducati Team GP12 MotoGP) says: “We’re starting with a different spirit. When I came to Wrooom (2011), I was still healing from my shoulder operation, and after that, the season didn’t go at all like we’d hoped.

“For this year, Filippo (Preziosi) designed a different bike, and they’ve made a big effort at Ducati to have it in time for the start of the winter tests. I visited the factory and saw it on a computer, and it’s beautiful.

“We’re not expecting it to be immediately perfect at Sepang, but rather to understand if we’ve worked in the proper direction. We’re very realistic, and our goal is to reduce the gap to our competition, step by step, working in a logical way, and from there to be able to refine the details in order to be competitive and to try and win.

“One of the most important things for going fast is to make the tires work as they’re able to, so together with Filippo, we’ve tried to come up with a bike that will let them perform as well as possible. We’ll see if we’ve managed it. I like working with Ducati. I feel good here because there’s a nice atmosphere and we all have faith.”

Hayden, who finished 2011 MotoGP in eighth overall, recently underwent surgery on his left scapula. He is hoping to be fully healed to participate in the first official MotoGP test session of 2012 at Sepang Jan. 31-Feb.2.

Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team GP12 MotoGP) says: “I’m much better, so I’ve been able to remove the sling right on schedule. Here at Madonna di Campiglio, I’m starting to do a little training on a stationary bicycle under the supervision of the team physiotherapist, with the goal of being ready for the Sepang test (31 January – 2 February) as strong as possible.

“I can’t wait to ride the GP12, because it will be my first time ever. I wasn’t able to try it in the post-race test at Valencia, and I definitely won’t miss the next chance. I never made any secret that I prefer the new displacement to the 800s, although I think things will be much different than in 2006, beginning with the tyres, and the electronics have also come a long way.

“We’ll have more power, and we’ll have to find the right balance between controlling it while still taking as much advantage of it as we can. I’ve stayed in contact with Filippo (Preziosi) and the guys in the Ducati Corse department over the winter, and I know they’ve worked really hard. We’ll have a lot of things to try at Sepang.

“I know it won’t be easy, but I’m also confident that we can start to reduce the gap between now and the first race at Qatar. I believe in Ducati, this project and Filippo, and I want to get back on my Ducati as soon as possible.”

And of course the riders had some fun, Rossi able to get in some snowboarding in the Dolomites.  Wrooom 2012 continues Wednesday with commentary from Filippo Preziosi, Ducati Corse General Manager, who will go into detail on the bike’s development and the technical program that will allow the Desmosedici GP12 to confront the new MotoGP season as well as possible.

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007, and is currently Online Editor at Ultimate Motorcycling. He is also the author of "365 to Vision: Modern Writer's Guide (How to Produce More Quality Writing in Less Time).

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