The Xerox Ducati squad have spent the last four weeks since the season finale in Portugal preparing for life without Troy Bayliss and are about to begin a new chapter with Japanese start Noriyuki Haga as their number one rider.
The factory team have prepared four 2009 specification 1098’s which are currently in transit to South Africa for the first top teams test at Kyalami.
Speaking to MCN, Team boss Davide Tardozzi said:
“It will be the first ride on our bike for Nori. The specification of the bike is very similar to 2008 and I think a lot of time will be spent getting Nori comfortable on the bike in terms of foot rest and handlebar position.
“We haven’t had a shakedown test on the bike so everything really is brand new, but for us the biggest difference is the rider this year, we just hope that we can get the same results.”
Tardozzi also confirmed that theer will be at least seven Ducati’s on the grid in 2009 compared to six in 2008. Factory Xerox Ducati men Noriyuki Haga and Michel Fabrizio will be joined by Sterilgarda riders Shane Byrne and Alessandro Polita, Guandalini Ducati riders Jacob Smrtz and Brendan Roberts with Regis Laconi on the DF Ducati.
The Kyalami test gets underway on Wednesday 10th to 12th December 2008.