Author: Sienna Wedes

Title: Danilo Petrucci & Francesco Guidotti aiming to make 2017 a memorable season of results for Octo Pramac Ducati

With the 2017 MotoGP season well underway, the Octo Pramac Ducati team have arrived in Malaysia eager to start working. Danilo Petrucci has earned the opportunity to ride a factory Ducati this season whereupon he is aiming to fight with the top guys in order to showcase his talent and his ability to perform for the Ducati manufacturer. From the first day of testing Danilo Petrucci believes that the bike has great potential and that he can find the equivalent belief in himself. 

Team manager Francesco Guidotti believes 2017 will be an exciting season with many challenges in store for the team. He has strong belief in his riders and knows that his team as a whole will work to make their presence known. The Sepang test is an essential start to the season to ensure that the riders find the right path to take from the get go.

There has been a vast change in riders and teams preceding the end of the 2016 season. This indicates the potential for closer competition and a tighter championship. Nevertheless Octo Pramac Ducati will have to work hard in order to achieve the goals they have set.

Q: What are your target expectations for 2017 with the new Factory GP17?

Danilo: Well big expectations lead to big delusions, so I’ll start by flying low. I’ll have a very competitive motorbike and the goal is to stay as close as possible to the twin motorbikes (Lorenzo and Dovizioso), which, like my motorbike, are the official Ducati’s. I want to stay in the middle of the pack of officials, but at the moment I don’t know where we’ll be, it’s still early. 

Q: Can you explain your feelings immediately after Valencia when you knew the 2017 Factory bike was yours? 

Danilo: It was a good feeling. For the first time I had to face this kind of challenge. A satellite team rider can set his goals but it is impossible to think of fighting for the title. Having to compete for points to beat the competition of my teammate was rather different. I must admit that I felt a lot of pressure but in the end was very satisfying. But now the pressure is on me all season.

Q: 2016 was an injury year for you, what does your fitness regime look like for 2017? 

Danilo: The last year’s tests have taught me that it is not important pushing to make the best lap-time. This is also because no points are awarded during testing. Unfortunately I understood this after the injury. For the 2017 test, then, I’ll start without thinking about the standings, but only to the development of the bike. Even my physical preparation has been programmed so I have to get in good shape early in the season. 

Q: How does the 2017 season look for you personally with expected target results?

Francesco: The 2017 season looks very exciting, in general there’s a lot of changes, many riders moved to different teams especially in the factory teams so it will be interesting. We’ve confirmed both riders and we know each other much better than last year so we can start working with fewer unknowns. We also have a full factory bike for Petrucci and this is a very nice and big challenge for our team. Our expectation is always hard to say, the target for a satellite team is to be as close as possible to the factory riders but every year the fight is more and more strong.

Q: What are the demands on you for both riders this season with regard to the GP17 Factory Bike and the GP16? 

Francesco: I ask them to be professional and to give their 100%, this is what is required. Being professional means to behave during the race week and also training hard during winter and between races. A motogp rider has to keep a certain level of concentration for many months. Not every race they can achieve what we would, they must be clever to bring home their best in those circumstances. 

Q: Now having a Factory Ducati in the team will there be any additional factory support for your team? Please explain

Francesco: For sure Ducati engineers will be more often in our garage, we have to support them to speed up the development of the new bike. This is not news for us, we had factory bikes in 2013 and 2014, we know what we have to do and the relationship with Ducati is good.

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Credit: Patrick Wedes

Credit: Deborah Wedes

About The Author

Sienna Wedes
PR Communications

Sienna manages all FORMULA Magazine social media platforms covering news on a daily basis with higher emphasis during MotoGP rounds. She coordinates specific interviews with race engineers and chief mechanics. Growing up in a motorsport family Sienna understands the sport and what the supporters and fans enjoy.