Nicky Hayden and his race engineer Juan Martinez highlight the importance of technical partnerships in MotoGP at the University of Zaragoza
The University of Zaragoza’s historic auditorium welcomed local engineering students to a unique event that gave them the opportunity to meet official Ducati MotoGP team rider Nicky Hayden and his race engineer Juan Martinez. The great hall of the former Department of Medicine opened its doors to the Ducati Team and its technical partner Shell in a bid to unveil the inner secrets of the passionate world of MotoGP.

Fernando Zulaica, Vice-Chancellor of Students and Staff at the University of Zaragoza, opened the conference entitled “The World of MotoGP: Shell’s test bed for the everyday rider”, before handing over to Aristides Bonilla, Director of Marketing and Development of Disa – licenced distributor of Shell’s service stations in Spain, for a more in-depth discussion about Shell’s commitment to the automotive world.

Juan Martinez was next to take the stage and capture the minds of the attending audience with his familiar candid, mild-mannered speech. With the help of detailed images he underlined the vital importance of technical development for all engine components in an environment as demanding as professional racing.

However, the much anticipated star of the event was Ducati team rider Nicky Hayden who shed further light on some of the perhaps lesser-known but equally vital developments brought about by Shell’s close technical partnership with Ducati, highlighting the R&D benefits gained through the development of the Shell V-Power fuels and Shell Advance lubricants.

Martinez explained: “It’s a great pleasure to be able to meet some of the future engineers of MotoGP. The questions that are asked here are approached from a completely different viewpoint from our own. This makes you look at your own experiences from a different perspective, which is extremely rewarding.”

Nicky Hayden was also pleasantly surprised at the variety of questions put to him by the students and the interest they showed: “It has been a fantastic experience because some of the faces in front of me could be working with me in the garage in the future. As team members we spend a lot of time together over the year and it’s very important to have open and constant communication between us because at the end of the day we are like one big family.”