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Aug 13, 2014

Ducati's Dovizioso Says New Engine Gives Him Confidence He Will Be Up Front Again At Brno

Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso (04).

The Ducati Team heads back to Europe for the Czech Republic Grand Prix

After completing the first of three August races in the calendar at Indianapolis, the Ducati Team has now returned to Europe, and the Czech Republic, for the eleventh round of the MotoGP World Championship this weekend at the Automotodrom Brno.

The circuit, which was built in the mid-80s, offers a fantastic spectacle for teams, riders and fans alike, with the main features being a succession of variable-radius corners together with numerous steep uphill and downhill sections. Fast and flowing with plenty of room for different lines, the Brno circuit is one of the most popular tracks on the calendar for riders.

Both Ducati Team men have been on the podium once in the premier MotoGP category in the Czech Republic race: Andrea Dovizioso finished runner-up in 2011, and his team-mate Cal Crutchlow third in 2012. Last year Crutchlow also set his second-ever MotoGP pole position at this circuit.

For the fifth time this season, the Brno race will see the participation of Michele Pirro, who will be out on track again with the Ducati Test Team’s GP14.

Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04)

“Brno is a nice, difficult track and totally different from Indianapolis. I like its up-and-down layout, even though it’s not one of my favorite circuits. The track itself has got a lot of straights, and my Desmosedici GP14 is certainly not lacking in power after the debut of the new engine at Indianapolis, so I’m feeling confident that we can again be closer to the others, like we were at Indy.”

Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team #35)

“I’m looking forward to going back to Brno, which is one of my favourite circuits, and I’ll be aiming to get a good result there. The track seems more suitable for the Ducati, because there are a lot of hard acceleration areas where I think we can gain some time, and the GP14 is also strong in the braking zone, even though we still need to still improve the cornering. My guys are working very hard for me and I look forward to working with them again in Brno.”

Michele Pirro (Ducati Test Team #51)

“I am very happy to return to the track to take part in a grand prix race. I have been training hard and I hope to be able to help the engineers to gather data on this track, but at the same time I want to try and get as close as possible to the factory riders. The Brno circuit is not one of my favourites, but I am convinced that in any case I can get a good result.”

The Automotodrom Brno

Until 1982, races at Brno took place on a street circuit on the outskirts of the city but a new permanent track was built in the mid-1980s and the Czech Republic Grand Prix returned to the calendar in 1987 after a gap of several years. Hugely popular with riders and fans, the circuit is situated in the hilly forests around Brno, which offer a fantastic view of the action from trackside.

Fastest lap: 2013 Marquez (Honda), 1’56.135 (167.4 km/h)

Qualifying: 2013 Crutchlow (Yamaha), 1’55.527 (168.3 km/h)

Track length: 5.403 km

Race length: 22 laps (118.9 km)

Corners: 14 (6 left, 8 right)

Race start: 2 pm local time (GMT +2)