Ducati is Not Using Team Orders to Reclaim Disintegrating MotoGP Title Bid
Paolo Ciabatti, the sporting director of Ducati, says that the marque “won’t give team orders” to any of its riders to reclaim its 2022 MotoGP title bid.
The MotoGP 2022 is in its mid-way, and the highest ranked Ducati rider, Johann Zarco, is standing in third place with 58 points ahead of Fabio Quartararo. On the other side, Francesco Bagnaia, the marque’s leading factory team rider has witnessed a shortfall from 91 by winning before the summer break at the Dutch Grand Prix. However, he is still behind Quartararo by 66 points.
Therefore, having nine races left for this season, Ducati’s options to illuminate its fading title hopes are diminishing. Moreover, with a roster of eight riders in the grid, Ducati insists that it will not enact team orders at this stage out of a principle dislike for them.
During the Assen weekend last month, Ciabatti said that there are still races to go, and according to their principle and a few exceptions in the past, they don’t like team orders.
He further said that even if it is the last race with one rider having no chance to win and the other may have, then it's time to think of a strategy. But, it is going to be an exceptional case. And right now, they are not in that situation.
He said that they will not give team orders but indications to avoid making extreme moves on each other. He also remembered the experience they had with Dovizioso and Iannone in Argentina and thought of avoiding a similar situation.
This is the only advice they are giving to their riders. Apart from it, they are free to do whatever they want and win the race, if possible.
In the past, probably in 2017, Ducati has used team orders while issuing a ‘mapping 8’ message to Jorge Lorenzo at the Malaysian and Valencia GP. It was his signal to disappear from Dovizioso’s way to help him win the championship.