Exactly one week after its world premiere at the Ducati Auditorium in Borgo Panigale, the new Desmosedici GP15 took to the track today in the IRTA tests at Sepang International Circuit, for the first time in the hands of the two factory Ducati Team riders. Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone first completed a few laps on their usual GP14.3 bikes, which had been used in the Sepang 1 tests at the start of February, before stepping onto their new machines for the first time.
Dovizioso lapped on the GP14.3 in 2’01.355, which was tenth quickest time of the day, before focussing entirely on his new bike, with which he completed 17 laps, the best of which in 2’01.692. Iannone did a total of 26 laps with the GP15, recording a time of 2’02.142 and he finished the day in fifteenth place. Track activities for the Ducati Team continued until mid-afternoon, before a sudden tropical storm at around 4.20 pm put paid to any remaining action today for the two Italian riders.
Michele Pirro was also out on track with the Desmosedici GP14.3 of the Ducati Test Team, and in these tests he had the job of verifying and developing electronics and chassis solutions.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 2’01.355 (10th), 22 laps.
“I am really very pleased with the first sensations on the new GP15 bike, and this for me was the most important thing. Above all I hoped that the new bike turned into and went through the corners better. Already on my out lap I could feel that the GP15 had improved a lot from that point of view and I am satisfied because this was the most important aspect for me. With the new bike we can manage to work more efficiently with all the adjustments, but today was our first day and unfortunately we didn’t have much time available, so it’s normal that there is still a lot of work to do to improve in the various fields.”
Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team #29) – 2’02.142 (15th), 30 laps.
“I was very anxious and curious to try the GP15 and I am satisfied with my first approach with the new bike. We were all waiting impatiently for it and we couldn’t wait to go out on the track, and my first impressions are very positive. Obviously we still have to work a lot to adapt the bike to our characteristics but we have a good starting point and I am more than satisfied. It’s a pity I couldn’t do many laps, but half-way through the afternoon it started to rain quite heavily and we preferred to bring things to an end for today.”
Michele Pirro (Ducati Test Team #51) – 2’03.105 (23th), 35 laps.
“Today we tested various electronics solutions, including software evolutions. Unfortunately we didn’t do many laps, but in any case we managed to do some reliability testing which will be useful for the future.”