Ducati ready for 'fresh start'


Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso see 2013 as a fresh start for Ducati in MotoGP after its troubled recent seasons.

The dream partnership with Italian legend Valentino Rossi failed to deliver any more than a handful of podiums for Ducati, which has not won a race since Casey Stoner's triumph in the 2010 Australian Grand Prix.

Audi's acquisition of Ducati ultimately led to a technical reshuffle in which former MotoGP manager Filippo Preziosi made way for ex-BMW World Superbike team boss Bernhard Gobmeier.

Nicky Hayden, who has been with Ducati since 2009, said the changes had been good for team motivation.

"We're very motivated, we have to work hard to make up for lost time," said Hayden as he addressed media, including AUTOSPORT, at Ducati's pre-season ski event.

"I see a fresh start, good motivation and a lot of fresh ideas. It is clear that there is a big challenge ahead of us.

"Things are exciting and fresh. I am looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish."

The American does not think Ducati's last few seasons were a total write-off, as at least the team can eliminate developments ideas that were unsuccessful.

"We don't cancel the information we gained last year," Hayden said.

"It's very important to rely on the stuff we already tested, and with new people you have new ideas which is something good.

"We have to make the bikes turn better, get more feeling and more feedback.

"A lot of the turning problem leads to other problems on corner exit. If you can't make it steer, can't lift it up, you don't have good traction.

"We still need to smooth the engine, especially on slower corners."

Hayden's new team-mate Andrea Dovizioso, who has moved from Tech 3 Yamaha to replace Rossi, believes Ducati has to be completely open-minded as it tries to return to form.

"I think that we must be open minded 360 degrees," he said.

"Logically there is the problem of time to be able to develop new material but I believe that if we can understand that something important has to be changed in terms of timing then we have to be able to do so.

"The last two years when Valentino was with the team, I want to see them as two positive years.

"If things do not work, one tackles them with intelligence."

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