First Shots: Nicky Hayden on the Ducati Desmosedici GP12

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To considerably less fanfare, Nicky Hayden took the Ducati Desmosedici GP12 today at Jerez, which for MotoGP fans means more photos of Ducati’s 1,000cc class prototype motorcycle. Ducati didn’t make a video of Nicky’s adventures on the GP12, but the race team got some valuable input from the American racer, who put in 61 laps for Ducati Corse once the circuit dried from high humidity. “When I woke up this morning, the sky was really gray and the track was completely wet,” said Nicky Hayden. “I was pretty disappointed. I didn’t think we’d be able to do anything because it wouldn’t have made sense to waste a day testing in those conditions.”

“The situation got better and better though, and after lunch, I was able to put on my leathers. I couldn’t wait to ride, and it was worth the wait. It’s an honor to be able to participate in the first track test of the GP12 because it doesn’t happen very often that you get to ride a bike on the track for the first time: it’s a special feeling. Everything went well, and we didn’t have a single problem: the motor is really nice to use, and I had a lot of fun riding the bike. I hope I gave some useful feedback to Filippo and the boys. I know they’ll be working on this bike while we go back to focusing on the next race, because this season just started.”

Ducati Corse also spent its time testing new parts for the GP11 this weekend, as the team tries to improve upon the bike’s front-end feeling and grip issues. Reaching the limits of what they can achieve in setup, new parts from Italy seems to be the next step in improving the Desmosedici GP11. We should have a glimpse of what changes the team has made to its current race bike in a few week’s time at Estorial for the Portuguese GP. Of course with the 2012 bikes starting to make a debut, anticipation is already building for the return of the 1,000cc machines.

“First of all, I’d like to thank everyone at Ducati,” said Filippo Preziosi, “because thanks to their hard work and expertise, it was possible to carry out three days of trouble-free testing and complete nearly a thousand kilometers with the GP12 in its track debut. Having received consistent feedback about the bike from four different riders puts us in a position to efficiently continue the development process, because we can prioritize the work we have left to carry out.”

Source: Ducati Corse