MotoGP

Ducati closing in on new MotoGP deal with Bagnaia


Bagnaia has been a Ducati rider for his entire MotoGP career, making his debut with the marque at the Pramac squad in 2019 and remaining there for 2020, before being promoted to the factory squad last season.

After two difficult years with Pramac, in which he scored just one podium, 2021 proved to be a breakout season for Bagnaia at Ducati as he won four races on his way to second in the championship – missing out to Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo by just 26 points.

With the improvements Ducati has made and Bagnaia’s coming of age in the premier class, the Italian heads into the new season as the favourite to challenge for the championship.

Autosport understands Ducati hopes to finalise its new two-year deal with Bagnaia before the start of the 2022 season on 6 March in Qatar.

“At the moment we are very close to renewing Pecco,” Ducati sporting director Paolo Ciabatti told Autosport/Motorsport.com in Malayisa during the Sepang pre-season test.

“If there are no surprises it will be done. That must be the natural development of thing.”

Bagnaia’s new deal will likely bring with it a pay rise for the Italian, who last year is believed to have been on a base salary of 800,000 euros – though his salary did receive an additional 800,000 euros in performance bonuses.

As to who will be Bagnaia’s team-mate from 2023, Autosport understands Ducati will take some more time to make a final decision.

Bagnaia’s current team-mate is three-time race winner Jack Miller, with the Australian out of contract at the end of the year.

It is thought Pramac’s Jorge Martin – who won a race in his debut season in 2021 – and Gresini’s Enea Bastianini, who scored two podiums on a two-year-old Ducati in his 2021 rookie campaign, are in contention for the second factory team seat.

It is unlikely Ducati will look elsewhere in the rider market to complete its 2023 line-up, given the depth of talent it has amongst its current ranks through its factory squad, Pramac, Gresini and VR46.


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