Andrea Dovizioso will have a wait before he can properly celebrate Sunday’s race win in the opening MotoGP race of 2019, after protests from Ducati’s opposition after the race saw the result referred to MotoGP’s Court of Appeals. The protest, lodged by Aprilia, Suzuki, Honda and KTM, is seeking to strip the Italian of his race win for using a new aerodynamic device attached to the swing arm of the Desmosedici.
Officially lodging their complaints after Sunday’s race, the earliest that an official complaint can be made despite Ducati’s rivals having prepared long in advance, the protest was originally rejected by the FIM Stewards Panel. However, it was then appealed, and with limited time to investigate the matter in the early hours of the morning following the night race, the appeals steward referred the matter to the MotoGP Court of Appeals.
In an official statement, MotoGP said:
At the VisitQatar Grand Prix, the FIM MotoGP Stewards Panel received various protests concerning aerodynamic devices on the rear swing arm of Ducati machinery ridden by Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati Team), Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati Team) and Jack Miller (Alma Pramac Racing).
The protests were made by Aprilia Racing Team Gresini, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, Repsol Honda Team and Team Suzuki Ecstar, who presented their concerns to the FIM MotoGP Stewards Panel. Based on guidelines and regulations currently in force, the FIM MotoGP Stewards Panel rejected their protests.
An appeals process then began and the appeals panel has subsequently decided to refer the case to the MotoGP Court of Appeals in order to attain more information pertaining to the matter.
The result of the VisitQatar Grand Prix remains in standing.