Rumor: Lorenzo/Ducati Deal All But Done

08/20/2009 @ 9:00 am, by Jensen Beeler6 COMMENTS


As we reported earlier this week, Ducati has allegedly handed Lorenzo a very generous monetary offer to ride for the Bologna team for the next two seasons, replacing the ill and questionable Casey Stoner. Reliable sources are now stating that Lorenzo and Marlboro/Ducati have come to a basic agreement, and that a deal could be announced at the Indianapolis GP.

Spanish paper, Motocuatro, is reporting that the deal between Jorge Lorenzo and Marlboro has been agreed to in principle, with the finer details of the contract still being ironed out. They also report that the figures being floated around would make Jorge Lorenzo the second highest paid rider in MotoGP, right behind current teammate Valentino Rossi.

This would therefore suggest the €7 million figure we quoted earlier as being in the ballpark of reality, and again nearly double what Fiat-Yamaha was willing to pay.

Also emerging in the news, is the apparent lack of concern Stoner had for his team regarding his decision to sit out the Brno, Indy, and San Marion GP’s. Apparently, the former champion did not consult anyone on the factory Ducati team, giving only a weeks notice of his decision. For tobacco sponsor Marlboro, this was the final straw in a long line of poor performances for the Australian outside of the race track.

Stoner has avoided and shirked his sponsorship duties, even sitting out post-race press conferences where he wasn’t a podium finisher. For a company like Marlboro, which foots a substantial part of Stoner’s salary, this lack of return on their investment must certainly be intolerable, and it begins to shape the understanding of why they would pay such a high price for Lorenzo. More on this as it unfolds.

Source: Motocuatro

  • I hope this comes to pass. I have argued that Ducati must secure Lorenzo in order to hedge against the risk that Stoner is finished and the growing reputation of Ducati as a career killer. Stoner is a strange personality that is hard to warm to and Randy Mamola’s on camera comments to the effect that “Casey needs to deal with stress” suggest we don’t yet know all the details of what ails Stoner

  • Billy B

    The criticism of Stoner sounds more tabloid style than anything. Leave that crap to the women’s magazines! Health should always come first, and you can be sure the sponsors/team management would have race wins on their mind! It would be a tough situation for all involved. Either way, the show must go on.

  • AT_R6

    I’m not a huge Lorenzo fan, but I’d like to see him in another team and there’s only Ducati that can produce a consistent race-winning bike to take the challenge to Yamaha (providing Lorenzo can ride it…). He must also now be thinking that the only way to beat Rossi will be with another team – last Sunday won’t have helped putting pen to another Yamaha contract.

    I agree with Mark Morrison – I think there’s more going on behind the scenes with Stoner and his attitude obviously hasn’t gone unnoticed. Hugely talented on the right day, but ultimately flawed.

    He’s no Rossi, that ‘Stoner the Moaner’

  • paul

    This must be really driving CS nuts !

  • hjworton

    Let us not get ahead of ourselves – Lorenzo has not signed for anyone yet. After what may or may not have happened in negotiation with Honda, this could be seen as yet more bluffing in order to secure equality – or close to it – at Yamaha.

    Personally I think Lorenzo would be taking a huge risk and a brave step to move to Ducati. It would be fantastic for the sport if someone else could put the thing at the front – to be frank, I think any of the top guys could, Melandri and Hayden do not come into that catagory. Put VR, Lorenzo or Dani on the red thing and it would win races. If I were Casey Stoner this must all be very stressful and not very helpful to his condition, whatever it might be. Lorenzo as a teammate is something he would not like. Let us hope that if all this talk has some substance to it, that it actually comes to pass. The championship would be re-invigorated with JL on the red thing.

  • Paul sheather

    I think its all smoke and mirrors. Lorenzo is playing the game to get more money from yamaha.

    Also they should roll back the electronic on the bikes then we will see who can ride these beasts