Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ducati: the "Phoenix" is ready to fly

After their third and final day of "secret" testing at Jerez, Ducati has broken the silence with a brief press release. 

"The Ducati Test Team, directed by Technical Director Filippo Preziosi, has completed three days of testing on the Spanish circuit of Jerez de La Frontera, with Carlos Checa and Franco Battaini followed by in the pit garage by Team Manager, Vittoriano Guareschi."

"The two riders completed a “shake-down” of the GP12, which will be tested in two weeks by the official riders, Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden."

"During the three days, in which weather conditions were cold but fortunately dry, the work program was completed without any problems enabling the team to complete all checks in preparation to start the winter tests in Sepang, Malaysia from 31 January until 2 February 2012."

Not surprisingly these few lines don't reveal very much, as they have clearly made an effort to be as vague as possible. 

So the mystery of the GP12 lives on, forcing us to wait a few more weeks before we receive the initial feedback on Filippo Preziosi's latest creation. At least it now seems clear that Ducati intend to call the bike the GP12, even if it's something of a misnomer; while the name 'GPZero' was essentially invented by the press, the number of changes made to the 2012 bike mean it could easily be called the GP12.3, or even the GP13, if that number weren't considered unlucky.

A name we do agree with is "Operation Phoenix," something Alex Brigs first mentioned on twitter.  In a little over ten days we'll know if the new Desmosedici can rise from the flames and learn to fly again.

One final note: at the conclusion of the test session, Carlos Checa returned to his familiar 1198 SBK, saying on twitter: "the bike felt good, but with an extra 6Kg it's harder to ride."

source: GPOne

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