Andrea Dovizioso has come away from the opening round of the 2017 MotoGP championship delighted with his performance, after managing to secure his third consecutive runner-up spot at the opening round.
Coming home in second behind Maverick Viñales – the third time in three years he’s been runner-up to a Yamaha at the race, albeit with three different riders onboard – the Ducati rider was able to hold off the attentions of Valentino Rossi to secure a good start to the season in difficult track conditions.
“I’m very pleased with the result and the job we did this weekend: it was difficult for everyone because of the conditions we encountered, but we worked well and we calmly arrived at the race with a competitive set-up. We were even better at choosing the rear tyre on the grid, changing strategy and switching to the soft tyre. In the final part of the race I tried to hold back Maverick but I don't think that we could have done anything better today.”
However, things were more difficult for Ducati debutant Jorge Lorenzo, who struggled home in 12th overall after admitting to still lacking significant experience with the Desmosedici machine.
“It was a very complicated race from all aspects. I started off well, but on the opening lap I went wide and lost a lot of positions, and this conditioned me in my efforts to get back up. Then I felt better on the bike and I started to lap at the same pace as the leaders, but unfortunately in the final part of the race I started to lose confidence in the tyres and my bike became a lot more physical to ride, so I had to slow the pace and I was unable to finish in the top ten. I want to be positive about things however, even though my first race with Ducati didn’t go the way we expected. It’s true that we are just at the start, and we know we’ve got a lot of work to do.”