The journey to return Ducati to winning ways in MotoGP will be a long one, with new race boss Bernhard Gobmeier admitting no miracle cure exists to help the Bologna factory end its winless streak in the premier class world championship.
Gobmeier, who replaced ousted Filippo Preziosi as head of Ducati’s MotoGP project in 2013, said the forthcoming season will be dedicated to development of the struggling Desmosedici, which hasn’t won a race since the end of the 2010 campaign.
German Gobmeier, who previously fronted BMW’s factory World Superbike effort, warned Ducati fans that there is no quick fix to bouncing back from a disastrous two-year spell with Valentino Rossi.
Speaking in public for the first time since beginning his new role at Ducati earlier this month, Gobmeier said: “There is not one thing that you have to change. There is not one miracle part as Nicky (Hayden) pointed out. It is not one particular part that we have to modify to gain another 0.5s.
What is very clear from the analysis of the last weeks is that we have to work on all technical entities of the bike like the engine, electronics, chassis and aerodynamics. There is no big breakthrough and it will all be little steps to improve the bike. We are pretty firm and confident that the potential is there.
The bike is not perfect as we all know but we will have some ideas to incorporate in the next weeks and months. We have to look at this as a mid and long-term project. We need to see development as not just a quick step in and a quick step out. It is a long-term commitment from Ducati and our parent company Audi to be in MotoGP.
Racing is the DNA of Ducati and therefore we will continue. Like Andrea (Dovizioso) said this year will be a strong development year with the goal of achieving results. But certainly we are aware that to catch up with the established elite in MotoGP it needs a lot of work and dedication and also some time.”
Asked whether there would be any significant input from new Ducati owners Audi, Gobmeier said there would be plenty of cross communication with the automotive giant but he said: “We will have to distinguish what kind of technology we are looking at. Audi has almost no motorcycle experience and Ducati will be on our own feet.
We have to master the challenges that are strictly motorcycle related. There are a lot of things that are totally different in car and motorcycle racing and Audi will help us though where we don’t have resources or we need additional resources in test equipment and scientific research. Audi has a very great interest in supporting us in those areas because also they learn technology and with cross communication on the car and motorcycle side, I think both companies can benefit from that.”
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