While Yamaha was generous enough to let its three-time champion Jorge Lorenzo hop over to the Ducati garage for the Valencia test, it has restricted him from speaking to the press about his new team and motorcycle.
But while JL99 kept silent, there wasn’t much left to be said seeing him and ex-rival and now team-mate Casey Stoner discussing matters, a smile plastered on their faces all along. Understandably, it was Jorge Lorenzo’s first time on a Ducati that had everyone on the edge of their seat.
The cameras were all trained on him as the readied to take out the Ducati GP16, and he didn’t disappoint. Lorenzo was third fastest on Day 1, and eight fastest on Day 2, which was when he tried out the new Ducati GP17. While Jorge Lorenzo familiarized himself with the Ducati Desmo, team-mate Andrea Dovizioso was tasked with the duty of carrying out development work, which he did, trying out a new engine with smoother power delivery.
Yes, their motorcycles had wings (banned for the 2017 MotoGP season), but it was purely for reference purposes. Over the winter break, Ducati boffins will have to figure out a way to retrain the downforce provided by the winglets, as the lift in fifth and sixth gears is otherwise hard to rein in.
Ducati team boss Gigi Dall’Igna seemed happy with how things went, and Jorge Lorenzo seemed satisfied to be working in a less hostile environment, with a motorcycle that’s as competitive as any. Count him out at your own peril.