Apr 1, 2002
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From a press release:<BR><BR>FIRST PICTURES OF THE NEW DUCATI FOR THE MOTOGP CHAMPIONSHIP<hr noshade size="1" width="450" align="left"><img src="../issues/apr02/DucGP.jpg"><hr noshade size="1" width="450" align="left">The bike will be presented to the world's press during the Italian GP at Mugello on May 30.<BR><BR>Bologna, April 1, 2002 - The development of the Ducati prototype bike for the new MotoGP championship is continuing on schedule. Wind-tunnel testing has been taking place over the past few months and an aerodynamic configuration offering extremely high performance levels has already been obtained, despite the shape undergoing constant development. The final version will only be defined after track tests and the intense wind-tunnel testing programme have been completed.<BR><BR>"Thanks to the freedom our engineers were given in the design of a new bike and a new engine at the same time, we were able to apply the concept of integration to the full", declared Claudio Domenicali, Ducati Corse Managing Director, who is in charge of the MotoGP project. "In particular the engine has been designed in line with the demands of the bike, and everything in function of the position of the rider. The result is a very compact bike, one that has been created around the rider giving him maximum freedom of movement through corners as well as allowing him to take up an extremely aerodynamic straight-line position with minimum physical effort.<BR><BR>"Extensive 3D CAD design has allowed us to analyse the layout and perfect the interaction between every component in a virtual mock-up modelled around the shape of the rider, obtaining unprecedented integration between all components.<BR><BR>"No aspect has been neglected in such a demanding and important project for our company. We have therefore also given particular attention to the search for an extremely low aerodynamic drag, which we view as vitally important because regulations based on fuel consumption reward the most efficient designs. The excellent wind tunnel results have also been obtained thanks to the compact nature of the Desmosedici engine, which has enabled a bike to be designed around it with the rider placed in an aerodynamically efficient position".<BR><BR>The tubular steel trestle frame and the exhausts pipes under the tail fairing, together with the desmodromic system and the L-shaped layout of the engine, maintain intact some of the characteristics typical of Ducati's sportsbike models.<BR><BR>"The tubular trestle frame was a natural choice", continued Domenicali. "Our victories in the World Superbike Championship confirm that this is an excellent technical design. The MotoGP prototype however has been built around an innovative structure, which by exploiting the layout of the L-shaped Desmosedici engine to the full, uses it as a stress-bearing member and reaches the required levels of stiffness with a substantial reduction in frame weight and dimensions.<BR><BR>"The decision to place the exhausts under the tail, which gives the bike a ‘family feeling', in line with Ducati's road-going sportsbikes, was made above all because of its aerodynamic advantage.<BR><BR>"Thanks to the commitment of the team headed by Ducati Corse Technical Director Filippo Preziosi, everything is continuing according to plan, and today we are in a position to announce the date when the definitive version of the bike will be presented to the world's press", concluded Domenicali. "The bike launch will be Thursday 30 May, during the Italian GP at Mugello. Ducati fans will also have an exclusive opportunity to see the bike during WDW2000 (World Ducati Week, Misano Adriatico, June 14–16), the event held every two years that brings thousands of ‘Ducatisti' from all over the world to Italy to celebrate with us their passion for our bikes".<BR><BR>