Miller: 8 Ducatis on MotoGP grid 'would be fantastic'
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Official rider Jack Miller thinks ‘it would be fantastic’ if Ducati puts a rumoured eight bikes on the 2022 MotoGP grid.In addition to the Factory team of Miller and Francesco Bagnaia, Pramac recently extended its deal as Ducati’s main satellite team until 2024.However, Avintia, currently the third Ducati team, is to be replaced by the new Aramco VR46 project next season, while Gresini is in need of machines as it makes the transition from Aprilia’s factory-partner back to an Independent team.In addition to Ducati, VR46 has been in talks with Yamaha, just as Lin Jarvis had forecast back in in February, and Aprilia has expressed interest in keeping its relationship with Gresini via a new satellite supply.Nonetheless, there is growing speculation that both VR46 and Gresini will run Ducati machinery in MotoGP next season, which would mean eight Desmosedicis on the grid for the first time since 2016.”I’m not stressed at all about eight Ducatis. It would be fantastic and I think we can provide a fantastic package for satellite teams,” said Miller, who also speculated that it would be a 50-50 split between new GP22s and year-old GP21s.Related ArticlesaccImages.createImage(); Petrucci hoping to get new KTM chassis in CatalunyaaccImages.createImage(); Petrucci hoping to get new KTM chassis in Catalunya”If there are eight Ducatis then I guess mine and Pecco’s 2021s will go to one team and Johann and Jorge’s [Pramac] ’21s will go to another team.”If that’s what they plan to do, then they have everything in place to do it. I feel that Ducati Corse can provide this base for the teams.”While Ducati is still to put pen to paper on all its satellite deals, Miller’s immediate future at the factory team is secure after a recent contract extension.Related ArticlesaccImages.createImage(); Valentino Rossi: Quartararo is making the differenceaccImages.createImage(); MotoGP podcast with Keith Huewen: Dupasquier tribute, Mugello reviewHowever, the Australian admitted he would have preferred something longer than another one-year agreement.”Was never my idea. As a rider I think I would like security in my life because it is not like I’m on a one-year contract any more to try and prove myself to maybe get a better contract [the year after],” he said.”But nothing really changes. I just seem to stay on a one-year contract and have to renegotiate next year. That’s the way the cookie crumbles and clearly they want to keep options open always. It makes you nervous but it is what it is. It’s the business we’re in.””4The two-year contracts of Bagnaia and Pramac rookie Jorge Martin also expire at the end of 2022, but heightened rumours of eight Ducatis will be good news for the likes of Johann Zarco (Pramac) and Enea Bastianini (Avintia), currently on one-year deals, as well as Petronas (which would keep the Yamahas). Bastianini’s team-mate and fellow rookie Luca Marini is set to race for his brother’s VR46 team whatever the machinery chosen.Although there are financial benefits to leasing more ‘customer’ bikes, Ducati is keen to at least retain its present six-bike supply (despite Dorna’s long-term goal of one factory and one satellite team for each brand) in order to maximise the amount of track data.”It’s really difficult to tell you how long we can continue with three different teams in MotoGP, because for sure sooner or later, we have to switch to four bikes, because this will be the situation for the future,” Ducati Corse general manager Gigi Dall’Igna said earlier this year.”5″For sure [we want] to continue as long as possible with the present situation, because I think we can have some advantages with six riders on the grid. From the technical point of view we can have more information, this can help us to develop the bike.”So I hope this situation will continue also for the next few years.”Should Aprilia fail to reach a deal with Gresini they are set to join Suzuki in continuing to have only a factory team presence in MotoGP next season.The reigning world champion’s were also exploring a satellite supply but Davide Brivio’s departure as team manager has complicated the issue and it looks unlikely to happen for 2022.However, if either VR46 or Gresini inks only a single-year deal with Ducati, it could well point towards the team having Suzuki plans for 2023…”6
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