Crutchlow U-turn creates headache for Pramac Ducati

Published: 13 August 2014

Pramac Ducati bosses have admitted Cal Crutchlow’s shock Desmosedici departure threw the Italian team's 2015 plans into disarray.

Paolo Campinoti’s satellite squad believed it would keep hold of number one asset Andrea Iannone for next season.

The Italian was unable to secure a switch to join Andrea Dovizioso once Crutchlow announced he was staying with the Bologna factory during the recent World Ducati Week celebrations.

But Crutchlow’s dramatic U-turn that saw him quit Ducati to move to LCR Honda meant Iannone was promoted to Ducati’s factory squad.

Had it been aware of Crutchlow’s departure sooner, MCN understands Pramac had wanted to sign Stefan Brad. But at the end of last month when Crutchlow confirmed he would be leaving Ducati halfway through a two-year deal, Bradl had already agreed to join Forward Racing Yamaha.

Pramac boss Francesco Guidotti told MCN: “It has been difficult because it looked like everything was fixed, especially after the declaration of Cal at World Ducati Week that he was staying.

"Now we have to re-consider everything with Ducati and also the sponsors because Andrea was very attractive for sponsorship, so we have to start almost from a plain sheet of paper. And we lost the right time to approach a rider of a certain level.”

Pramac has been linked with Eugene Laverty, Dominique Aegerter and Johann Zarco and Guidotti admitted that Pramac would take a financial hit too by Iannone’s departure, with some sponsors leaving and fresh investment no longer coming in at the anticipated level.

Guidotti added: “Not everybody is staying. With new sponsors we confirmed Andrea after World Ducati Week and we were right at the end of negotiations. But without Andrea we have to re-consider everything.

"We had an Italian sponsor, so they were pretty happy to have an Italian rider that was challenging for the top five. Maybe they will stay but with a different amount.”

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