Ducati declared itself very satisfied with a trouble-free first test of the GP12 bike it is developing for MotoGP's new 1000cc rules era next year.
The new machine made its testing debut at Jerez over the last three days, with race riders Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden joining team boss Vito Guareschi and test rider Franco Battaini to conduct the initial evaluation. The team's technical chief Filippo Preziosi said Ducati had achieved everything it could have hoped for at this stage.
"First of all, I'd like to thank everyone at Ducati, 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," he said.
"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 prioritise the work we have left to carry out."
Hayden got his turn on the GP12 yesterday, and was relieved when the weather cleared up after a wet morning and allowed him to hit the track for the afternoon.
"When I woke up this morning, the sky was really gray and the track was completely wet," he said. "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."
He shared teammate Rossi's encouraging first impression of the bike.
"Everything went well, and we didn't have a single problem," said Hayden. "The motor is really nice to use, and I had a lot of fun riding the bike."