Larry Pegram Says Ciao to Ducati

11/16/2010 @ 5:23 pm, by Jensen Beeler13 COMMENTS

Larry Pegram announced today that he will not be riding a Ducati in the AMA American Superbike series. Pegram initially put together the Team Foremost Insurance / Pegram Racing team in 2006 with the help of Ducati North America, and campaigned the Ducati 1198R Superbike last season to a fourth place Championship position. Pegram is expected to announce what bike he will campaign next week, with the idle gossip in the AMA paddock suggesting either a Suzuki or Kawasaki.

“I truly appreciate each and every fan who came to the races to cheer on the team,” Pegram said in his press release. “Ducatisti are very enthusiastic about racing and that really helped our good races become great races.”

“I am very proud of the results that Foremost Insurance / Pegram Racing achieved for Ducati and I am very appreciative of the support they gave the team, especially Michael Lock and the employees of Ducati North America and Corse,” continued Pegram. “It is with a very heavy heart, that I announce we will be unable to continue racing with the brand in 2011.”

We couldn’t reach Ducati for a comment on Pegram’s announcement (although we might be able to lure a PR person out in the comments section), but it is interesting to note Pegram’s mentioning of former Ducati North America CEO Michael Lock, who left the company earlier this year. Perhaps Lock’s departure has something to do with Pegram’s move.

Photo: the00rig / Creative Commons – Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

  • Mark

    Aprilia RSV4, hopefully??

  • 76

    maybe Ducati North America not playing a supporting role anymore might have alittle more to do with it than Lock, just a guess.

  • Other Sean

    Always seemed like the red headed step child of Ducati racing. But yes, Lock’s gone, and Ducati production racing seems to now be the red headed step child of the factory!

  • Faster1

    It’s sad, that even in the states, the worldwide prestigious motorcycle company, Ducati, which was once synonymous with racing is all but gone from racing. No doubt that they are putting all their eggs (finances) in the Valentino Rossi GP basket, all at the expense of all other series. If I were a share holder in a company which made these crazy decisions, I would be furious. Even if Valentino wins a title for Ducati (which seems unlikely), does Ducati really expect global financial returns from the limited exposure? I guess that selling their (once dominant) sportbikes to john Q Public is not that important anymore. There is no longer a publicly viewed platform to showcase their factory efforts. Satilites never have the factory clout.
    Ducati worldwide factory racing will be missed. VR had the right shirt, it just needs to be modified “Bye Bye Ducati Sport-bike Racing”.

  • Dave

    I read somewhere that KTM might be interested in getting in to AMA.
    Would be cool to see Larry on an RC8 next year.

  • Neil

    Think BMW people….BMW…

  • The whole “Ducati abandoned WSBK to pay for Rossi” rumor really has to stop (this is the first I’ve heard it with an AMA twist though). Marlboro picked up the tab for Rossi (and pays a HUGE portion of Ducati’s MotoGP bill), the same went for Xerox in WSBK. The idea that Rossi’s 15 million euro rumored salary would cause the demise of all of Ducati’s other racing efforts is a bit ridiculous.

  • joe

    Who does have a factory team in AMA? Do they yellow flag laps while speed is on commercials? Is it true 2012 AMA superbike will only run on nascar ovals? Will Ducati stop making production motorcycles to pay Rossis salary?

  • There really is little benefit I can see to any factory supporting AMA racing, The races are a mess, lightly attended, TV coverage has low ratings. As expensive as fielding a race team is, a factory has to be ablel to believe that its investment will result in increased exposure and sales. Couple the poor product DMG has set out with a rotten economy and it is easy to see why all the factories, not just Ducati have little interest in the AMA program.

    As to World Superbike, that series has its act fully together. I believe that Ducati has bowed out of a factory effor in a snit over what it feels are unfair rules. Truth be told, Ducati’s current superbike platform just is not quite good enough, so Ducati is probably smart to save the euros and put those funds into developing its next superbike.

  • k-

    In response to “John,” I am not sure what you mean by the races being a “mess” but I found the AMA races this year to be highly entertaining (much better than many of the WSBK and Moto GP races)and many of the riders agreed that it is much better now. I went to WSBK, AMA and Moto GP events this year and all were lightly attended in the U.S. European events had a much better atmosphere overall.

    I do agree with you about the TV coverage but hey…. it’s SPEED. you can only watch so many episodes of “Pinks,” “Pinks ALL-OUT,” and NASCAR practice!

    I also agree that Ducati’s bike is not up to par with the others so a full factory effort is not economical on their part.

  • 76

    Actually the rumor is that Eraldo Ferracci is the going to be running a team for 2011, rider unkown..

  • Other Sean

    There’s too much going on at once with Ducati to really know what’s what. I’ve a hard time believing that suddenly last year the 1198 was uncompetitive when it almost won the year before, and did win the year prior to that.

  • Halfie30

    Ducati has clearly moved out of factory SBK teams to focus that money on it’s next Super Bike. From rumors going around they may actually run cam chains instead of belts. If this is the case I hope the “old” belt cam bikes become the new “supersport” line of Duc’s, but that is just me dreaming… LOL.