European media outlets are reporting that Danilo Petrucci, the current MotoAmerica Medallia Superbike Championship leader, may join the Aruba.it Ducati World Superbike team next year, but the 31-year-old Italian says his 2023 racing plans are undecided.
“For sure, Ducati is following us really close [and] is helping us. I know that I am one of the riders on the list,” Petrucci exclusively told Roadracingworld.com Thursday in the paddock at Ridge Motorsports Park, site of this weekend’s MotoAmerica event. “I got the chance also last year, but last year after MotoGP I needed a bit of rest to, let’s say, take the level a little bit down. Not the riding but less pressure. For a rider, racing in [World] Superbike is like racing in MotoGP. I don’t want any more to have this kind of pressure.
“First of all, I want to win this Championship, and then I decide. I don’t think Ducati [is in a] hurry to know the name of the second rider, and especially from my point of view, I need to understand what I like to do.
“At the moment, to tell the truth, I have no idea about it. I really don’t know what Championship I will do next year, but it is something I don’t want to be in a hurry and take a decision now because I want to have a clear idea.
“Let’s see. I think I want to continue racing, but I don’t know in what Championship. For sure, I told the Ducati guys I will not go in the Dakar next year because it is too tough. If I want to, for example, [race in] MotoAmerica next year, going to the Dakar and the preparation and then leaving again for MotoAmerica, it’s too much. I am not any more a young boy. I need a bit of rest.”